Biostatistics is the practical application of statistical concepts and techniques to topics in biology. Because biology is such a broad field — studying all forms of life from viruses to trees to fleas to mice to people — biostatistics covers a very wide area, including designing biological ­experiments, safely conducting research on human beings, collecting and verifying data from those studies, summarizing and displaying that data, and analyzing the data to draw meaningful conclusions from it.

No book of reasonable size can hope to span all the subspecialties of biostatistics, including molecular biology, genetics, agricultural studies, animal research (in the lab and in the wild), clinical trials on humans, and epidemiological research. So I've concentrated on the most widely applicable topics and on the topics that are most relevant to research on humans (that is, clinical research). I chose these topics on the basis of a survey of graduate-level biostatistics curricula from major universities. I hope it covers most of the topics you're most interested in; but if it doesn't, please tell me what you wish I had included. You can e-mail me at, and I'll try to respond to your message.

About This Book

I wrote this book as a reference — something you go to when you want information about a particular topic. So you don’t have to read it from beginning to end; you can jump directly to the part you’re interested in. In fact, I hope you’ll be inclined ...

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