The Master of Science program in biostatistics requires a minimum of 38 s.h. of graduate credit. The program provides training in the design of experiments and in analysis of data related to biomedical or public health problems. It emphasizes mathematical, statistical, and computer methods for dealing with quantitative information and provides opportunities for students to gain statistical consulting experience with a variety of problems.

M.S. students are required to complete an in-depth preceptorship under the direction of a departmental faculty member and a final comprehensive-style examination.

Students must maintain a g.p.a. of at least 3.00. Those who receive a grade of C on 7 s.h. of course work may be dismissed from the program.

The M.S. with a major in biostatistics requires the following course work.

Core Courses

All of these:
BIOS:5510Biostatistical Computing (taken twice for 2 s.h. each; topics should be programming with R and programming with SAS)4
BIOS:5710 & BIOS:5720Biostatistical Methods I-II8
BIOS:5730Biostatistical Methods in Categorical Data3
BIOS:6610Statistical Methods in Clinical Trials3
BIOS:7500Preceptorship in Biostatistics3
EPID:4400Epidemiology I: Principles3
One of these sequences:
STAT:4100-STAT:4101Mathematical Statistics I-II6
STAT:5100-STAT:5101Statistical Inference I-II (preferred for students who intend to earn a Ph.D.)6
Public Health Requirement
This course:
CPH:6100Essentials of Public Health2
Responsible Conduct of Research Training
This course:
BIOS:7270Scholarly Integrity in Biostatistics1


Students complete a minimum of 5-6 s.h. of electives with at least 3 s.h. in quantitative course work (statistics or biostatistics). It is recommended that students consider a biology/public health course as the other elective, particularly for those who have not had prior exposure to these areas. Electives must be approved by the advisor and the director of graduate studies.

BIOS:6210Applied Survival Analysis3
BIOS:6310/STAT:6550Introductory Longitudinal Data Analysis3
BIOS:6650Comparative Effectiveness Research Methods for Observational Data3
BIOS:6810Bayesian Methods and Design3
BIOS:7110Theory of Biostatistics I4
BIOS:7120Theory of Biostatistics II4
BIOS:7210/STAT:7570Survival Data Analysis3
BIOS:7310Longitudinal Data Analysis3
BIOS:7410/STAT:7510Analysis of Categorical Data3
BIOS:7600Advanced Biostatistics Seminar (topics include high-dimensional data analysis, statistical methods in bioinformatics, model selection, spatial modeling, statistical computing)1-3
BIOS:7700Problems/Special Topics in Biostatistics1
CBH:4105Introduction to Health Promotion and Disease Prevention3
CS:5110Introduction to Informatics3
ECE:5220Computational Genomics3
GENE:7191Human Molecular Genetics3
HMP:4000Introduction to the U.S. Health Care System3
IE:4172Big Data Analytics3
OEH:4240Global Environmental Health3
PATH:8133Introduction to Human Pathology for Graduate Students4
STAT:4520Bayesian Statistics3
STAT:6540Applied Multivariate Analysis3
STAT:7200Linear Models4
STAT:7400Computer Intensive Statistics3
STAT:7520Bayesian Analysis3

Applicants to the M.S. program in biostatistics must apply through the Schools of Public Health Application Service (SOPHAS). After the SOPHAS application is verified, the applicant pays a supplemental Graduate College admission fee to the University of Iowa Office of Admissions. For detailed application information, visit Requirements and How to Apply to Biostatistics on the Department of Biostatistics website.

The biostatistics faculty considers several factors when evaluating applications for admission, including Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test scores, grade-point averages, letters of recommendation, intent and motivation for graduate study, and research interests.

All applicants must hold a bachelor's degree, have a cumulative g.p.a. of at least 3.00, and have taken the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) General Test. Applicants whose first language is not English and who do not hold a baccalaureate or more advanced degree from an accredited institution in the United States, United Kingdom, Ireland, Canada (excluding French Quebec), English-speaking Africa, Australia, or New Zealand must score at least 100 (Internet-based) on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Applicants with lower scores are not considered for admission. In place of TOEFL scores, the department accepts International English Testing System (IELTS) scores of 7.0 or higher, with no subscore below 6.0.

All biostatistics applicants are required to have strong written and oral communication skills.

All applicants must be competent in at least one computer programming language. They also must have mathematical sciences training in methods and techniques of single variable and multivariable differential and integral calculus, and in linear algebra. Previous course work or experience in statistical methods or data analysis is preferred.

Applicants must meet the admission requirements of the Graduate College; see the Manual of Rules and Regulations of the Graduate College.

Students may enter in the fall; the priority application deadline is December 1.

A limited number of teaching and research assistantships are available. Assistantships offer financial support and tuition assessed at the resident tuition rate along with a tuition scholarship. They also provide valuable on-the-job training experience.

For information on financing education through jobs, grants, and loans, contact the University's Office of Student Financial Aid.

Graduates find career opportunities in many areas, including pharmaceutics, health care, research companies and institutions, consulting firms, universities, and government agencies.