Biostatistics for Credit

Biostatistics for Medical Science and Public Health 1 & 2
taught by Dr. Abhaya Indrayan

Aim of Course:

The first part of this online course, "Biostatistics for Credit" covers sensitivity-specificity and predictive values of medical tests, confidence intervals, medical vs. statistical significance, and chi-square, Student's t and ANOVA F-tests, including multiple comparisons. The second part of Biostatistics for Credit covers clinical trial designs including randomized controlled trials, ROC curves, CI and tests for relative risk and odds ratio, and an introduction to survival analysis.

Note: you will receive separate enrollment instructions for Part 1 and Part 2

Course Program:

Biostatistics for Medical Science and Public Health 1

WEEK 1: Probability in Health and Medicine

  • Medical uncertainties and probability
  • Elementary laws of probability
  • Bayes' Rule
  • Sensitivity-specificity of a medical test
  • Positive and negative predictive value
  • Effect of prevalence

WEEK 2: Confidence Intervals

  • Sampling distributions and SEs
  • Large sample CI for one-sample mean and proportion
  • Exact CI for proportion and median
  • Large sample CI for differences between means and proportions
  • Sample size for estimation

WEEK 3: Statistical vs. Medical Significance

  • P-value and level of significance
  • The concept of statistical power
  • Medical vs. statistical significance
  • Sample size for significance and power analysis
  • Chi-square test for simple situations

WEEK 4: Some Statistical Tests for Quantitative Data

  • Student's t-test for one-sample and two-sample situations
  • ANOVA for one-way and two-way tables
  • Tukey test and Bonferroni procedures for multiple comparisons
  • Test for medically significant gain and equivalence test

Biostatistics for Medical Science and Public Health 2

WEEK 1: Introduction to Designs for Clinical Trials

  • Control group
  • Randomization and matching
  • Blinding and masking
  • One-way, two-way and repeated measures designs
  • Cross-over design

WEEK 2: ROC Curves

  • Review of sensitivity-specificity
  • Serial and parallel tests
  • ROC curve
  • Predictivity-based ROC curve
  • Clinical gains from a test

WEEK 3: Relative Risk (RR) and Odds Ratio (OR)

  • Definitions and applicability of RR and OR
  • CI and test of hypothesis for RR
  • CI and test of hypothesis for attributable risk
  • CI and test of hypothesis for OR

WEEK 4: Introductory Survival Analysis

  • Censored durations and need of special methods
  • Life table method
  • Kaplan-Meier method

Biostatistics for Credit

Who Should Take This Course:
This non-mathematical course is specially designed for medical and health professionals who deal with medical data and want to acquire some statistical skills. These include nursing, pharmacy, laboratory technology and nutrition professionals beside physicians, surgeons and dentists.
You should be familiar with introductory statistics.  Try these self tests to check your knowledge.
Organization of the Course:
This couse is comprised of two separate courses, taken together for college credit:

Part 1:  Biostatistics 1 (4 weeks)

Part 2:  Biostatistics 2 (4 weeks)
Note:  Parts 1 and 2 can be taken separately

This course takes place online at the Institute for 8 weeks. During each course week, you participate at times of your own choosing - there are no set times when you must be online. Course participants will be given access to a private discussion board. In class discussions led by the instructor, you can post questions, seek clarification, and interact with your fellow students and the instructor.

At the beginning of each week, you receive the relevant material, in addition to answers to exercises from the previous session. During the week, you are expected to go over the course materials, work through exercises, and submit answers. Discussion among participants is encouraged. The instructor will provide answers and comments, and at the end of the week, you will receive individual feedback on your homework answers.

Time Requirement:
About 15 hours per week, at times of  your choosing.

Options for Credit and Recognition:

Students come to the Institute for a variety of reasons. As you begin the course, you will be asked to specify your category:

  1. You may be interested only in learning the material presented, and not be concerned with grades or a record of completion.
  2. You may be enrolled in PASS (Programs in Analytics and Statistical Studies) that requires demonstration of proficiency in the subject, in which case your work will be assessed for a grade.
  3. You may require a "Record of Course Completion," along with professional development credit in the form of Continuing Education Units (CEU's).  For those successfully completing the course,  CEU's and a record of course completion will be issued by The Institute, upon request.
  4. You may need academic credit - see below.

College credit:
Biostatistics for Credit has been evaluated by the American Council on Education (ACE) and is recommended for the graduate degree category, 3 semester hours in biostatistics. Note: The decision to accept specific credit recommendations is up to each institution. More info here.
Course Text:

The course text is Medical Biostatistics, third ed., by Abhaya Indrayan, and can be ordered directly from the publisher, CRC Press.



Course participants should have access to a standard statistical software package for use in course exercises, including obtaining CI's, performing tests of significance including two-way ANOVA and multiple comparisons tests, and producing ROC curves. Stata, SAS, MedCalc and R have these capabilities and are supported by teaching assistants. SPSS and Systat also have these capabilities.

For more information about obtaining free or nominal cost versions of standard software packages, click here.



August 03, 2018 to September 28, 2018 January 04, 2019 to March 01, 2019 August 02, 2019 to September 27, 2019 January 03, 2020 to February 28, 2020 July 31, 2020 to September 25, 2020

Biostatistics for Credit


August 03, 2018 to September 28, 2018 January 04, 2019 to March 01, 2019 August 02, 2019 to September 27, 2019 January 03, 2020 to February 28, 2020 July 31, 2020 to September 25, 2020

Course Fee: $848

Do you meet course prerequisites? What about book & software? (Click here to learn more)

We have flexible policies to transfer to another course, or withdraw if necessary (modest fee applies)

Group rates: Click here to get information on group rates. 

First time student or academic? Click here for an introductory offer on select courses. Academic affiliation?  You may be eligible for a discount at checkout.

Register Now

Add $50 service fee if you require a prior invoice, or if you need to submit a purchase order or voucher, pay by wire transfer or EFT, or refund and reprocess a prior payment. Please use this printed registration form, for these and other special orders.

Courses may fill up at any time and registrations are processed in the order in which they are received. Your registration will be confirmed for the first available course date, unless you specify otherwise.

The Institute for Statistics Education is certified to operate by the State Council of Higher Education in Virginia (SCHEV).

Want to be notified of future courses?

Student comments