The MS in Biostatistics will allow students to specialize in the design and analysis of health-related and biological studies, while maintaining the rigor and technical training of the Statistical Science master's program.

In this degree, students will take a statistics core and a "bio" core, involving courses in public health, biology, and clinical medicine (including ethics). It also involves a research core which allows students to solve real data problems in the biological or health area and collaborate with other scientists in an interdisciplinary team. Finally, students will choose from electives in bioinformatics, global and community health, or targeted statistics courses.

This graduate degree prepares students for analyzing difficult data specific to biology and health. The program, with its research core, will also be sufficiently rigorous for students who wish to pursue a PhD in Biostatistics.

Admissions 

In addition to satisfying general admission requirements for graduate study, all applicants are expected to have basic computer literacy. They also must hold a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution in a field that includes coursework in multivariable calculus, matrix or linear algebra, statistics, and calculus-based probability. Applicants with degrees in such fields as mathematics, statistics, and some engineering programs usually meet these requirements. For applicants with degrees in other fields, these requirements are normally satisfied if students have successfully completed courses equivalent to the listed Mason courses.

Note that coursework taken to correct deficiencies in undergraduate preparation is not counted toward the degree.

MATH 113Analytic Geometry and Calculus I (Mason Core)4
MATH 114Analytic Geometry and Calculus II4
MATH 213Analytic Geometry and Calculus III3
MATH 203Linear Algebra3
or MATH 321 Abstract Algebra
STAT 250Introductory Statistics I (Mason Core)3
or STAT 344 Probability and Statistics for Engineers and Scientists I
STAT 346Probability for Engineers3
or MATH 351 Probability

Specific application deadlines and requirements are available through the Office of Graduate Admissions. 

Banner Code: EC-MS-BSTA

Degree Requirements

Total credits: 30

In addition to meeting general requirements that apply to master's degrees at Mason, all students must complete the 21-credit core requirements for the degree. A grade of "B-" or better is required in all 500-level statistics core courses. Students build on these core requirements by choosing 9 credits of electives.

Core Courses

Statistics Core

The Statistics core provides the basic probability, statistical analysis techniques, and statistical modeling tools that all biostatisticians must know, and provides a basis for higher level elective coursework.

STAT 544Applied Probability3
STAT 554Applied Statistics I3
STAT 654Applied Statistics II3
Total Credits9

Bio Core

The Bio core is designed to provide the biological background necessary for biostatisticians. These courses offer preparation in the areas of public health and epidemiology (GCH 712 Introduction to Epidemiology), bioengineering (BENG 501 Bioengineering Research MethodsBENG 538 Medical Imaging) as well as bioinformatics (BINF 630 Bioinformatics Methods). In addition, this portion of the core curriculum ensures that students are trained in the statistical techniques required for clinical medicine, and includes material on ethics in research (STAT 560 Biostatistical Methods).

GCH 712Introduction to Epidemiology3
or BENG 501 Bioengineering Research Methods
BINF 630Bioinformatics Methods3
or BENG 538 Medical Imaging
STAT 560Biostatistical Methods3
Total Credits9

Research Core

The Research core has been designed to assist students in the development of the requisite skills for careers in consulting or research. These courses will allow students to consult directly with biologists and medical and public health scientists on real data problems and provide opportunities to write reports and give oral presentations.

STAT 634Case Studies in Data Analysis3
or STAT 798 Master's Research Project
Total Credits3

Electives

The electives labeled STAT are specifically chosen from the department's master's-level electives to include techniques that are particularly important for biostatisticians.

Select three electives from the following:9
International Research Ethics and Methods
Advanced Multivariate Statistics and Data Analysis for Health Care Research
Statistical Inference
Nonparametric Statistics
Multivariate Analysis and Statistical Learning
Statistical Graphics and Data Exploration I
Categorical Data Analysis
Survival Analysis
Statistical Learning and Data Analytics
Advanced Biostatistical Methods
Statistical Methods for Longitudinal Data Analysis
BENG 525
Medical Image Processing
Biomaterials
Advanced Biomechanics
Total Credits9

Bioengineering, BS/Biostatistics, Accelerated MS

Overview:

Highly-qualified undergraduates may be admitted to the bachelor's/accelerated master's program (BAM) and obtain the Bioengineering, BS and the Biostatistics, MS in an accelerated time-frame after satisfactory completion of a minimum of 146 credits.

Admitted students are able to use up to 6 graduate credits in partial satisfaction of requirements for the undergraduate degree. Upon completion and conferral of the bachelor's degree and with satisfactory performance (grade of 'B' or better) in each of the graduate courses, students are given advanced standing in the master's program. 

See AP.6.7 Bachelor's/Accelerated Master's Degrees for policies related to this program.

Students in an accelerated degree program must fulfill all university requirements for the master's degree. For policies governing all graduate degrees, see AP.6 Graduate Policies.

BAM Pathway Admission Requirements:

Applicants to all graduate programs at George Mason University must meet the admission standards and application requirements for graduate study as specified in Graduate Admissions Policies and
Bachelor's/Accelerated Master's Degree policies. 

Students will be considered for admission into the BAM Pathway after completion of a minimum of 60 credits with an overall GPA of at least 3.0. 

Students who are accepted into the BAM Pathway will be allowed to register for graduate level courses after successful completion of a minimum of 75 undergraduate credits and course-specific prerequisites.

Accelerated Master's Admission Requirements

Students already admitted in the BAM Pathway will be admitted to the Biostatistics, MS program if they meet the following criteria, as verified on the Bachelor’s/Accelerated Master’s Transition form:

  • Completion of Mason’s requirements for undergraduate degree conferral (graduation) and completion of application for graduation. 
  • An overall GPA of at least 3.0.
  • Completion of the following Mason courses each with a grade of C or better:
MATH 213Analytic Geometry and Calculus III3
BENG 320Bioengineering Signals and Systems3

Accelerated Pathway Requirements:

To maintain the integrity and quality of both the undergraduate and graduate degree programs, students complete all credits that satisfy requirements for the BS and MS programs. Students can take up to six credits of the following approved graduate level courses listed below as part of their undergraduate degree that will also be applied to the graduate degree.

BENG 501Bioengineering Research Methods3
STAT 554Applied Statistics I3
STAT 560Biostatistical Methods3
STAT 663Statistical Graphics and Data Exploration I3

All graduate course prerequisites must be completed prior to enrollment.  Each graduate course must be completed with a grade of B or better to apply toward the MS program.  The graduate courses may be counted as Technical Electives toward Bioengineering, BS program requirements, with approval of the Bioengineering Department undergraduate coordinator.

While still in undergraduate status, a maximum of six additional graduate credits may be taken as reserve graduate credit and applied to the master's program. Reserve graduate credits do not apply to the undergraduate degree.

For more detailed information on coursework and timeline requirements, see AP.6.7 Bachelor's/Accelerated Master's Degrees policies. 

Degree Conferral:

Students must apply the semester before they expect to complete the BS requirements to have the BS degree conferred. In addition, at the beginning of the student’s final undergraduate semester, students must complete a Bachelor’s/Accelerated Master’s Transition form. At the completion of MS requirements, a master’s degree is conferred.

Statistics, BS/Biostatistics, Accelerated MS

Overview:

Highly-qualified undergraduates may be admitted to the bachelor's/accelerated master's  program (BAM) and obtain the Statistics, BS and the Biostatistics, MS in an accelerated time-frame after satisfactory completion of a minimum of 138 credits.

Admitted students are able to use up to 12 graduate credits in partial satisfaction of requirements for the undergraduate degree. Upon completion and conferral of the bachelor's degree and with satisfactory performance (grade of 'B' or better) in each of the graduate courses, students are given advanced standing in the master's program. 

See AP.6.7 Bachelor's/Accelerated Master's Degrees for policies related to this program.

Students in an accelerated degree program must fulfill all university requirements for the master's degree. For policies governing all graduate degrees, see AP.6 Graduate Policies.

BAM Pathway Admission Requirements:

Applicants to all graduate programs at George Mason University must meet the admission standards and application requirements for graduate study as specified in Graduate Admissions Policies and Bachelor's/Accelerated Master's Degree policies. 

Students will be considered for admission into the BAM Pathway after completion of 60 credits with an overall GPA of 3.0.

Students who are accepted into the BAM Pathway will be allowed to register for graduate level courses after successful completion of a minimum of 75 undergraduate credits and course-specific prerequisites.

Accelerated Master's Admission Requirements

Students already admitted in the BAM Pathway will be admitted to the Biostatistics, MS program, if they have met the following criteria, as verified on the Bachelor’s/Accelerated Master’s Transition form: 

  • Completion of Mason’s requirements for undergraduate degree conferral (graduation) and completion of application for graduation. 
  • An overall GPA of 3.00.
  • Completion of the following Mason courses each with a grade of C or better:
MATH 114Analytic Geometry and Calculus II4
MATH 203Linear Algebra3
STAT 334Introduction to Probability Models and Simulation3
or STAT 346 Probability for Engineers
STAT 354Probability and Statistics for Engineers and Scientists II3
or STAT 360 Introduction to Statistical Practice II
STAT 362Introduction to Computer Statistical Packages3

Accelerated Pathway Requirements:

To maintain the integrity and quality of both the undergraduate and graduate degree programs, students complete all credits that satisfy requirements for the BS and MS program with up to twelve credits overlap chosen from the following graduate courses: 

STAT 544Applied Probability 13
STAT 554Applied Statistics I 13
STAT 560Biostatistical Methods 23
STAT 663Statistical Graphics and Data Exploration I 13

All graduate course prerequisites must be completed prior to enrollment.  Each graduate course must be completed with a grade of B or better to apply toward the MS degree. 

While still in undergraduate status, a maximum of 6 additional graduate credits may be taken as reserve graduate credit and applied to the master's program. Reserve graduate credits do not apply to the undergraduate degree.

For more detailed information on coursework and timeline requirements, see AP.6.7 Bachelor's/Accelerated Master's Degrees policies. 

Degree Conferral:

Students must apply the semester before they expect to complete the BS requirements to have the BS degree conferred. In addition, at the beginning of the student's final undergraduate semester, students must complete a Bachelor's/Accelerated Master's Transition form that is submitted to the Office of the University Registrar and Graduate Recruitment and Enrollment Services. At the completion of MS requirements, a master's degree is conferred.