Master's FAQs

Please note: All information below is subject to change. Please make sure to check back frequently for updates.

Admission to the PhD program is much more selective. Successful candidates usually have demonstrated strong quantitative skills and often have a prior baccalaureate or Master’s degree in statistics or a related field.

There is an option in our Ph.D. application that allows applicants to indicate that they would also like to be considered for the Master's Program. It has also been our practice for the Ph.D. committee to recommend students that they believe are not yet qualified for the Ph.D. Program but would be good Master's candidates to the Master's Admissions Committee for review. If selected you will be contacted by the Master's Committee. That being said, if you want more timely consideration by the Master's Committee you may want to apply to the Master's Program directly.

Applicants to the Biostatistics program should apply through SOPHAS, a centralized application service for accredited schools and programs in public health. For more information on how to apply please visit the SOPHAS application Instructions. If you have any questions, please contact SOPHAS Sophas Customer Service Phone:  (617) 612-2090 Open Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm EST. Customer Service E-Mail: [email protected]

Apply through SOPHAS

Applications are due by February 1 (Please have all uploads, test scores, letters of recommendation and transcripts in by this time. 

Not necessarily, but the letter writers must be in a position to evaluate your academic performance in courses relevant to the proposed field of study. In addition, we like to see letters of support from those who can attest to your interest in and aptitude for quantitative work related to biostatistics as well as those who have supervised you in a biostatistics related job or internship 

The ScM in Biostatistics is considered a STEM degree. You can see the specific information about STEM fields here. This means with an ScM in Biostatistics an international student can remain on an F1 visa status for 36 months after graduation. 

    Not generally, because course sequencing assumes that students will start in the fall semester. In exceptional circumstances, or when course requirements have been satisfied, a spring entry can occur.

    The GRE is not required

    Yes, but most of our students are full-time, and the possibility of part-time study would need to be discussed with the Graduate Program Director. 

    Upon review by the Admissions Committee, suitable candidates’ may be notified informally by the department as their application is reviewed (as early as February). This is not a binding offer. Only the graduate school is allowed to make a formal offer, and these are sent out typically in March. 

    *The GRE is not required for the 2020-2021 application cycle*  

    Official GRE and TOEFL test scores are required and should be submitted through SOPHAS using the process described on their website here. Please use Brown SPH SOPHAS- 7765 as the reporting code for GRE Scores. Directions for submitting your TOEFL scores can be found here on the SOPHAS website. Your application will not be considered complete and will not be reviewed until all official test scores are attached.  

    As with the GRE, the GPA is interpreted in context. We are looking for demonstrated excellence in courses, particularly those related to the proposed field of study.

      Yes, a request for deferral of admission based on personal circumstances is considered on a case-by-case basis. Your place in the next year's entering class is reserved.

      Students should have good mathematical preparation, including multivariable calculus, linear algebra, and mathematical probability using calculus .You may apply before completing these courses, however they need to have been completed prior to starting the program.

      Tuition and fees vary from year to year, but fees are charged by course.  More detailed information on tuition costs and fees can be found on the Graduate School website.
      (Note: that these figures are based on a 4-course-per-semester schedule and ScM Master's Course load is usually 3-3-2-2, over the course of 4 semesters) You are also responsible for Health Services Fee, Student Activity Fee, and Student Recreation Fee and Health Insurance costs.

      International transcripts - SOPHAS will only accept evaluations obtained from World Education Services (WES ICAP). SOPHAS cannot accept any documents other than the WES ICAP evaluation. For more information on applying as an international applicant, visit Please also review the requirements by the Graduate School – that information can be found here:
      Although not required, it may be helpful if one of your letters of recommendation is from a native English speaker who can comment on your spoken and written English proficiency.

      Most courses use most widely used programs are R for instruction. Stata is also commonly used. Training in SAS is also available, from the School of Public Health. Facility in any of these programs is a plus, but is not required, as it is introduced in the curriculum.

      TOEFL scores are required of international students, unless a student has or is expecting to receive a BS or MS from a U.S. university or from an institution where the primary language is English. TOEFL or IELTS scores submitted should be from within the last two years. For more detail, see the Graduate School policy. Brown requires a score of at least 90 for admission. Official TOEFL scores should be sent to both SOPHAS (TOEFL reporting code  5688) and Brown University Graduate School (reporting code 3094)

      We normally invite all admitted students to a Masters Recruiting Day in early March. On that day, faculty and administrators are available to meet with students. Candidates who cannot attend that day can arrange to come another day, but are not guaranteed to be able to speak with all faculty.

      If you are an international student that has or are expecting a degree from a US University/Institution you will qualify for a TOEFL waiver through SOPHAS. There is no need to email to request a waiver you will automatically qualify once your application is submitted. 

      The number of applications received varies from year to year.  The department aims to have about 20 students in each incoming class

      We do not require a specific type of undergraduate degree. Applications from students in applied fields such as biology, biochemistry, economics and computer science are strongly encouraged, with the understanding that necessary mathematical coursework needs to be completed before enrollment in the program.