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Arnold School of Public Health

  • Epidemiology and Biostatistics faculty members posing

Epidemiology and Biostatistics

Public Health was defined by C-E.A. Winslow as the science and the art of preventing disease, prolonging life, and promoting physical health and efficiency through organized community efforts with the goal of enabling every citizen to realize his/her birthright of health and longevity. 

The disciplines of epidemiology and biostatistics are essential to achieving the goals of public health, and combining these two disciplines in a single department creates synergies for both training and research. Epidemiologists study the distribution and determinants of health and disease in populations.  Biostatisticians develop and apply statistical theory, methods and techniques to public health research data and the planning, implementation and evaluation of public health programs. Given the strong overlap, epidemiologists and biostatisticians often collaborate to work toward the shared goal of generating and analyzing data to advance the public’s health.

Within the department, the degree programs are administered under two separate streams, the Division of Epidemiology and Division of Biostatistics.

Find out more about the department and what we offer in our welcome from the Chair.

Degrees Offered

We offer eight advanced degrees in epidemiology and biostatistics. Each graduate degree has specific application deadlines and requirements.


Epidemiology and Biostatistics News

Melissa Nolan

Reducing infectious disease

USC features epidemiology associate professor Melissa Nolan, whose search for innovative ways to curb the impact of viral and insect-borne illness has earned her a Breakthrough Star Award.

faculty awards

Faculty Award Winners recognized at annual Hooding Ceremony

The Arnold School is proud to announce the recipients of the 2023 Faculty Awards: James A. Keith Excellence in Teaching Award (Courtney Monroe), Faculty Research Award (Jihong Liu), and Faculty Service Award (Alicia Flach).

Humna Fayyaz

Physician completes third USC degree to address addiction for patients, populations

After graduating in May with an MPH in Epidemiology, Humna Fayyaz will continue her training in these areas with a fellowship in addiction medicine at the University of Illinois-Chicago Hospital.

Melissa Nolan

Melissa Nolan to establish USC Institute for Infectious Disease Translational Research

USC is launching five new research institutes, with one led by associate professor of epidemiology Melissa Nolan. Supported by $2 million over four years, the team will study emerging diseases that could threaten public health.

Gabriel Benavidez

Top graduate student award winners announced

The top master's and doctoral students were honored at the annual Hooding Ceremony. Sujal Patel (M.S. in Advanced Athletic Training) received the Jeffrey Keith Mattison Award, and Gabriel Benavidez won the Doctoral Achievement Award. 

Chase Ferch

Staff Spotlight: Chase Ferch

As the epidemiology and biostatistics department's grant administrator, Chase Ferch oversees the pre-award and post-award management for all grant funding.

Award Icon

Student award winners announced

The Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics is proud to announce the recipients of their 2023 Student Awards. These four students were selected for their outstanding performance both academically and outside the classroom.

Michael Wirth

Michael Wirth wins Alumni Medal Award

Michael Wirth, assistant professor of epidemiology and nursing, is the recipient of the Norman J. Arnold Alumni Medal, which is bestowed upon an alumna/us who has graduated more than 10 years ago.

More Arnold School News

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