PhD Program in Biostatistics

Biostatistics booksBeginning with the 2017 academic year, this program will be offered through the NYU School of Medicine Sackler Institute. The PhD program in Biostatistics offers interdisciplinary instruction and research opportunities. The program has research strengths in the following areas: the development of techniques for the statistical analysis of clinical trials, longitudinal studies, observational data, meta-analysis, survival data, and disease screening. Studies in biostatistics also involve the analysis of multivariate data produced by high-density microarrays ("gene chips") where the expression of tens of thousands of genes can be measured simultaneously.

The PhD program is designed to prepare individuals for careers in research and teaching of biostatistics. It is recommended that applicants have previous course work in biology and statistics or mathematics. Normally, successful applicants will have a masters degree in a relevant field or at least two years of relevant research experience. Currently, there are 6 students in the Program.

Admission Requirements

The Sackler Institute of Graduate Biomedical Sciences at NYU School of Medicine admits full-time students for our PhD program. Applicants must have at least a bachelor's degree or its equivalent from a college or university of recognized standing, with a strong background in the biological, chemical and physical sciences. Evaluation for admission to our open program is based on:

  • Previous academic achievement
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Assessment of the applicant's scientific potential
  • Scores on the Graduate Record Examination (GRE)
  • Demonstration of English proficiency through the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), if applicable

After an initial screening, selected candidates are invited to NYU Sackler for interviews. Application forms and all supporting materials are due by December 1st. For more information about admissions, visit the Sackler Institute's page.

General Degree Requirements

A total of 72 credits, as well as a doctoral dissertation, are required for the PhD degree. At least 36 credits must be didactic courses; the remaining can be research and tutorial credits. Candidacy for the PhD is achieved through a Qualifying Examination, and the completed dissertation is then defended in a final oral examination. The Qualifying Examination consists of two stages: a written examination, and the writing and oral defense of a specific research project proposal (doctoral dissertation outline).

New trainees are encouraged to establish early and frequent discussion with members of the faculty, and to acquaint themselves with the types of research activities conducted within the Division. This enables them to explore mutual interests, which facilitates the ultimate selection of a research advisor. To this end, all first-year predoctoral students are required to begin participating in a formal series of rotations within laboratories, chosen based upon the students perceived interest and with the advice and approval of the traineeĀ“s initial advisor. Presentations of available research opportunities are initially made during the first week of each academic year, during an orientation program at which time faculty members describe the research opportunities in their laboratories.

All students in the Program are required to take three "core" Environmental Health Science courses. These are Environmental Health (G48.1004), Biostatistics (G48.2303), and Principles of Toxicology I (G48.2310). In addition, students are also required to take certain courses in the basic sciences, the nature of which depend upon the specific area of concentration. These courses are generally offered through either the Biology Department or the Basic Medical Sciences Program. Additional courses may also be taken at local universities that are members of the Inter-University Doctoral Consortium . Beyond the above requirements, there are no universal course requirements, and the remaining curriculum for each predoctoral student will vary, depending upon his/her interests. Thus, a specific program of study is arranged for each student that is appropriate to his/her particular background and career goals.

Contact information

The Sackler Institute of Graduate Biomedical Sciences
NYU School of Medicine
341 East 25th Street, 2nd Floor
Phone: 212-263-5648