Biostatistics & data science

Improving the health of people by interpreting data and transforming it into knowledge.

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Leading in a data-driven world

The Department of Biostatistics and Data Science is the academic home for statisticians and data scientists working to help people live better by translating data into public health knowledge.

We believe that the synergy between statistics and data science has the means to revolutionize the way we improve population health and deliver healthcare services. This intersection drives evidence-based decision-making in both research and industry, and already serves an integral role in enhancing the quality of life for people around the world. We equip our students with the knowledge and experiences needed to thrive in this era of Big Data. Our well-established faculty develop and maintain interdisciplinary networks across the Texas Medical Center, and use these relationships to ensure students have the opportunity to tackle real world challenges as part of their education.

“As a biostatistics student at UTHealth School of Public Health, you will develop expertise in the theory and practice of biostatistics, working with faculty who are renowned leaders in statistical theory and its applications to health sciences. Recently we have also developed new education programs in data science, including a Data Science Certificate and an Advanced Data Science Certificate, to develop our students’ ability to analyze and integrate Big Data from biomedical and health sciences.”

Dr. Hulin Wu
Department Chair


Preparing the next generation of statisticians and data scientists for a data-driven world.

Biostatistics uses statistical tools and methods to make sense of the vast quantities of data generated by health research. Through classroom instruction and hands-on experience, our students learn operate in two roles, both as leaders in their field and as expert translators of data and statistics for their project partners and clients. Each role is equally important. As leaders in statistics, our students are primed and ready to consult on creating the right structure and collection methods for accurate data, exploring new methodology to improve efficiency and veracity of study findings. As project partners, our students learn to articulate findings to stakeholders in a way that is meaningful and actionable—biostatistics is a delicate science, and data must be interpreted and shared with discipline and care to ensure that it is leveraged effectively. While our PhD program in biostatistics is among the top 6 of the largest biostatistics PhD programs in the country, upon completion of their degree, all of our students are prepared to safeguard public health and improve lives in academia, industry, government, and beyond.

Biostatistics and data science research

The Department of Biostatistics & Data Science has a diverse array of statistical and data science research areas available to our faculty and students. A major strength and component of our department is the Coordinating Center for Clinical Trials (CCCT), which has a more-than-40-year history of successfully coordinating large multicenter clinical trials and providing comprehensive services for these endeavors. We also recently established the Center for Big Data in Health Sciences (CBD-HS), which hosts several Big Data research projects, including development of predictive models and heterogeneous data integration methods for Electronic Healthcare Record (EHR) data, insurance claim data, and data from public databases or data repositories. And our new Center for Biostatistics Collaboration and Data Services will provide opportunities for our faculty and students to collaborate and interact with biomedical and health science investigators to address scientific questions using their statistical and data science skills.

You can review more information about our training grants on the Training Grants in Biostatistics page.

Our research interests and efforts include:
  • Clinical Trials
  • Experimental and Adaptive Designs
  • Survival Data Analysis
  • Longitudinal Data from Observational and Epidemiological Studies
  • Bayesian Methods in Public Health
  • Bioinformatics/Computational Biology
  • EHR/EMR, Insurance Claim and Healthcare Data Modeling/Analysis
  • Imaging Data Analysis
  • GIS/Spatio-temporal Data Analysis
  • Risk and Disease Progression Modeling
  • Unstructured Data Analysis
  • Big Data Analytics
  • Data Management, Harmonization and Integration
  • Data Visualization and Software Tool Development
  • Missing Data
  • Stochastic Processes
  • Nonparametric statistics
  • Time Series Data
  • Casual Inference
  • Statistical Genetics
  • Machine Learning Methods

Degree programs

The Department of Biostatistics and Data Science offers the following degrees:

Master of Science (MS)
  • Master of Science in Biostatistics
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Biostatistics

Certificates offered

The Department of Biostatistics and Data Science offers the following certificates:

For non-degree seeking students:
  • Data Science Certificate
  • Advanced Data Science Certificate (beginning spring 2020)
For degree-seeking students:
  • Data Science Certificate
  • Advanced Data Science Certificate

Contact us

Dejian Lai, PhD
Professor of Biostatistics
Faculty Admissions Representative
(713) 500-9270

Emmanuel Moon
Academic and Admissions Advisor
(713) 500-9564


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