Role of the Department Within UB

The role of the Department of Biostatistics within UB and across Western New York spans several domains: teaching, research, economic development and service. 

Housed with the School of Public Health and Health Professions, we also have a formal presence in the Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences (CoE), Roswell Park Cancer Institute (RPCI), the Clinical and Translational Research Center (CTRC) and the Institute for Healthcare Informatics (IHI).

Faculty Expertise and Leadership

Our faculty members may be considered broadly to have expertise in the disciplines of bioinformatics, biostatistics, mathematical statistics and probability, statistical genetics and public health informatics.

  • Randy Carter, PhD, associate chair of the department, also serves as director of the Population Health Observatory (PHO) housed within the department. The PHO collaborates with researchers throughout UB, the New York State Department of Health, RPCI, the CoE and the Institute for Healthcare Informatics.
  • Gregory Wilding, PhD, serves as vice chair of biostatistics at RPCI.
  • Lili Tian, PhD, is UB’s director of graduate studies.  
  • Jeffrey Miecznikowski, PhD, serves as the School of Public Health and Health Professions’ associate dean for faculty affairs and diversity and as a department representative on the Faculty Council.

Academic Offerings at UB and Roswell Park Cancer Institute

We offer an undergraduate minor in statistics, an MPH degree with a concentration in biostatistics and MA and PhD degrees in biostatistics. In addition, the department teaches several required undergraduate and graduate service courses, such as STA 119 Statistical Methods, which generally has enrollments of more than 1,000 students per academic year.

The RPCI Department of Biostatistics offers an MS degree in bioinformatics and biostatistics which utilizes several courses from UB’s department.

New Programs Planned

Our faculty members also serve on the steering committee for a new PhD degree in genetics, genomics and bioinformatics offered through UB’s School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.

Randy Carter, PhD, is developing a new interdisciplinary PhD degree program in health services policy and practice as part of an expansion of our School of Public Health and Health Professions.

We are currently working with the Department of Mathematics to develop a five-year collaborative degree program leading to both a bachelor’s in mathematics and a master’s in biostatistics.

Collaborative Research and Economic Development

Department faculty members play a key role in collaborative research and economic development within the university and in developing their own research programs.

  • In 2010-2011, faculty members averaged 8.8 publications per year as compared to the AAU median of 2.7 papers for all disciplines.
  • During the past year, faculty members published in several top-tier statistics and biostatistics journals, including Statistics in Medicine, Biometrics, Journal of Statistical Planning and Inference, Annals of the Institute of Statistical Mathematics, Canadian Journal of Statistics and Bioinformatics. 
  • In 2010-2011, faculty members averaged $142,873 federal research dollars compared to the AAU median of $163,000 for all disciplines.