Public Health is an interdisciplinary concentration that examines: patterns of, and explanations for, population health and disease; health policy; cross-cultural and international aspects of health; the organizational and social structures through which health services are delivered/received; and the public health system. Courses in the concentration allow students to explore the ways in which the social, political, behavioral and biological sciences contribute to the understanding of national and international health care systems, resource allocation, and patterns of population distributions of health and disease. There are 12 course requirements for all concentrators, with 2 additional independent studies for those pursuing Honors.
The concentration also provides students with courses in basic research methods and statistics necessary for problem solving and critical thinking in the emerging emphasis on evidence-based health care and public health.
The Community Health/Public Health concentration is relevant for students with career interests in public health; disease prevention and health promotion; health policy and epidemiology; clinical health care delivery; health care administration; international health, and health law.
Statistics has a theoretical core surrounded by a large number of domains of application in diverse fields, including economics, psychology, biology and medicine, sociology, population sciences, government, anthropology, astronomy, physics, chemistry, geology, engineering, and computer science. At Brown, graduate training in Biostatistics is available in the Department of Community Health and in Mathematical Statistics in the Division of Applied Mathematics. In addition, several other Departments are offering introductory and even advanced courses in statistical methodology, including the Departments of Economics, Sociology, Psychology, Political Science and Computer Science.
The Undergraduate Concentration in Statistics, established in 1997, is an interdepartmental program, administered by the Center for Statistical Science and leading to the Sc.B. degree. It is supervised by a faculty program committee, representing all interested departments. The program is constructed on several premises: that statistics is a scientific discipline in its own right, with its characteristic methodology and body of knowledge; that it is essentially concerned with the art and science of the analysis of data; and that it is best taught in conjunction with specific, substantive applications. To this end, the concentration is designed to provide a foundation of basic concepts and methodology, requiring students to take core courses in the discipline itself, and to expose students to a cross-section of statistical applications, through courses (of their own selection and subject to approval) in the social, biological and natural sciences. In a senior honors thesis, each student will be required to carry out a major project of statistical data analysis in one of these disciplines. The Concentration prepares students for careers in industry and government, for graduate study in statistics or biostatistics and other sciences, as well as for professional study in law, medicine, business, or public administration.