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Course Overview 

Statistics provides the basic framework for thinking about data in a rigorous fashion. Biostatistics applies this thorough examination of data to information gathered in the biological sciences, including clinical trials, public health, environmental health, genetics, and genomics. Biostatisticians help researchers design experiments and studies, collect and analyze data, and draw meaningful conclusions communicated to the public. It seeks to differentiate between correlation and causation to uncover the proper interpretation of data. 

This course is intended as both a refresher and a first course in the applications of statistical thinking and methods within the biological sciences. It emphasizes key attributes that contribute to clinical trial research and design. Descriptive and inferential statistics will be covered, and students will be challenged to evaluate scientific research within their field of interest critically.

 Topics include:

  • Basic probability
  • Discrete and continuous distributions
  • Descriptive statistics
  • Confidence intervals
  • Hypothesis-testing
  • Correlation
  • Simple regression
  • Chi-square tests
  • Analysis of variance (ANOVA)
  • Nonparametric methods

Practical experience:

  • Organize, summarize, and present data
  • Describe the relation between two variables
  • Understand basic probability and probability distributions
  • Work with sample data to make inferences about a population

Software: Students are encouraged to use R to complete course assignments, although not required.


 Prerequisites: None

Course typically offered: Online in Fall, Winter, Spring, and Summer (every quarter)

Next Steps: After completing this course, consider taking Biostatistical Methods I: Linear Regression and ANOVA to continue learning.

For more information, contact 

Related Documents 

Course Number: BIOL-40049
Credit: 3.00 unit(s)
Related Certificate Programs: Biostatistics

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