Biostatistics is the field that develops and applies quantitative methods for the design and evaluation of biomedical studies based on statistical and mathematical concepts. The need for biostatistics is widespread. For example, modern clinical trial designs require a sophisticated understanding of methods for allocating patients to treatments and the appropriate application of analysis techniques to address research hypotheses. Analyses of observational and non-experimental data present many additional challenges and opportunities, and are particularly important in the era of “Big Data,” with very large databases and highly dimensional data becoming routine in fields such genetics, comparative effectiveness research with electronic medical records or insurance claims databases, and imaging science. New statistical methods must be developed for these opportunities and challenges while maintaining high standards for accounting for biases, appropriately quantifying uncertainty, and ensuring reproducibility of results.
The Division of Biostatistics is committed to developing an internationally recognized research and educational program in biostatistics that fully supports the increasing scope and diversity of biomedical research, complexity of data sources and research designs, and continuing evolution of educational technologies.