Biomedical Informatics Degree Programs and Courses

Biomedical informatics is the intersection of medical biology and computer science, using technology, probability and statistics to collect and analyze data. Learn which biomedical informatics degrees are available, what courses they include and how to prepare for admission to a program. Schools offering Bioinformatics degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What You Need to Know

Biomedical informatics degree programs and courses involve the use of computer technology in collecting, storing and analyzing biological and medical data. These programs or courses teach students how to effectively utilize technology for managing and securing healthcare information, as well as preparing them for careers in biomedical or healthcare informatics.

Degrees Master's or doctoral degrees in biomedical informatics
Certificates Graduate certificates are available
Online Online programs are available for graduate certificates and master's programs

What Degree Programs Are Available in Biomedical Informatics?

Biomedical informatics programs are available at the graduate level at several universities around the country. You can find 2-year master's degree programs in biomedical informatics, as well as Ph.D. programs that may take 2-5 years to complete. Both types of graduate programs require full-time, residential and research-based study, including time spent on a thesis or dissertation. A Master of Science or Doctor of Philosophy in Biomedical Informatics may be two available options.

What About Other Programs?

You can also find programs that are more flexible, such as online or on-site graduate certificate programs or online master's degree programs. You can complete these programs in 1-3 years of full- or part-time study. These programs tend to be designed for working professionals who are looking for additional training in bioinformatics or clinical informatics. Specifically, you might find a Graduate Certificate in Bioinformatics.

What Should I Look For in a Program?

When selecting a graduate program, you may want to make sure the school offers adequate research and lab facilities, such as those for biological analysis and medical data computation, as well as expert faculty with whom you can work. You may also want to select a program that provides adequate funding for students, either from professional and academic organizations or the university itself.

How Should I Prepare for Admission?

Admission requirements for biomedical informatics programs can vary depending on where you are applying. An undergraduate degree is the most common requirement, but some programs give preference to students who have majored in computer science, biology, engineering, medicine, information management or another related area. Some competitive programs, however, prefer students who have already completed some graduate training in the medical field, such as those who hold an M.D. or R.N. degree.

A high undergraduate grade-point average, typically above 3.0, and above-average graduate admissions test scores in math and science are also common requirements. Taking undergrad courses in computer programming and applied math, such as statistics, may also help you prepare for admission.

What Kinds of Topics Will I Study?

In most programs, you will take practical skills classes. Some programs may also require courses in more clinical areas such as consumer health or public health informatics. Other courses can include:

  • Molecular cell biology
  • Grant writing or health policy
  • Genome data systems
  • Information security
  • Statistics
  • Experimental design
  • Computer programming
  • Biochemistry
  • Virology
  • Computational biology

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
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