Biostatistics (MS)

The primary objective of the M.S. program in biostatistics is train students in the application and evaluation of core biostatistical methods for application in public health and biomedicine. Student completing the program are trained in core biostatistical methods, design of experiments and public health surveys, statistical computing, biostatistical consulting, probability, and mathematical statistics. The Faculty of Biostatistics have expertise in bioinformatics, biomarker data, data mining, causal modeling, classifier development and validation, covariate measurement error models, ecological momentary assessment, environmental statistics, experimental design, high dimensional data analysis, longitudinal data analysis, machine learning, medical diagnostic testing, missing data problems in clinical trials, nonparametric methods, recurrent events analysis, ROC curves, semiparametric regression, spatial epidemiology, spatial statistics, statistical genetics and survival analysis.

Students receiving a M.S. in Biostatistics should meet the following competencies:

  1. Demonstrate a command of core biostatistical techniques, including their computation, theoretical underpinnings, and their application in public health and biomedicine.
  2. Work independently as a collaborator with public health and biomedical researchers to design clinical trials, case-control studies, public health surveys, and other experimental and observational studies.
  3. Conduct and publish original research on the theory and application of biostatistics aimed at developing new and innovative methods for analysis of public health and biomedical data.
  4. Communicate effectively with investigators in public health and biomedical research.
  5. Teach biostatistics to undergraduate students in public health, biomedicine, and related fields.
  6. Demonstrate and practice ethical research as it pertains to data management, analysis, and interpretation.
  7. Critically review the statistical literature, and the statistical content of the public health and biomedical literature.

Students will achieve those competencies through course work, collaboration with researchers in biomedicine and public health, and completion of a dissertation under the mentorship of Biostatistics faculty.


Motivated by the unique ethical challenges posed by working with human subjects and by the complexity of human, biological and public health systems, biostatistical research involves the development of new and innovative statistical methods for analyzing biomedical and public health data. Biostatisticians can design efficient public health surveys, clinical trials, and biomedical experiments that minimize the number of subjects exposed to inferior treatments, and maximize the amount of information obtained from the study subjects while securing the privacy of sensitive human-subjects data. Biostatisticians seek to develop new and innovative statistical methods for efficient analysis of the resulting data, yielding scientifically-defensible conclusions regarding the impact of risk factors and medical therapies on disease, quality life and health of human populations.

Students seeking a graduate degree in Biostatistics can choose among the following degrees: Master in Public Health (MPH), M.S. in Biostatistics, and Ph.D. in Biostatistics. Detailed information about each degree is available at the College of Public Health’s website. Prospective students desiring financial aid may apply directly to the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics. A limited number of research and teaching assistantships are available from individual faculty, the department and the Graduate School. Students should apply before December 31 to ensure consideration for these competition graduate assistantships.

College of Public Health
N130 Paul D. Coverdell Center for Biomedical and Health Sciences
Athens, GA 30602-2102
Epidemiology and Biostatistics
B.S. Miller Hall
101 Buck Road
Athens, GA 30602-7396
Andreas Handel