Admissions

Ph.D. Application Process

Thank you for your interest in the Duke University Ph.D. in Biostatistics Program. The online application for admission may be found at the Duke University Graduate School application website.*

Application Deadline

The 2018 deadline is December 8, 2018.  The Department matriculates Ph.D. students in the fall only.

Entrance Requirements

When submitting an application, candidates are required to have the following:

  • Completed on-line Graduate School application
  • Transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate institutions where you earned (or will earn) a degree, studied for one semester or more, or took classes that relate to your current application for graduate study
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Statement of purpose
  • Graduate Record Examination (GRE) score
  • Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) score (If applicable) or​ International English Language Testing System (IELTS) score (If applicable)

Additional information about the Duke University Graduate School application may be found at the Graduate School application website.

Student Profile

Some of the traits associated with success in our program are problem definition, problem solving, quantitative thinking, critical thinking, communication, intellectual curiosity, and dedication.  Regarding training, a mathematical background is particularly important.

Students will need proficiency in both single-variate and multi-variate calculus and linear algebra.  Specifically, incoming students should have a working knowledge of:

  • Optimization of functions
  • Inverse functions
  • Sequences, series and convergence, Taylor series
  • Convergence of sequences of functions (pointwise, uniform, in measure)
  • Differentiation and integration of single- and multi-variate functions
  • Fubini's theorem
  • Fundamental theorem of calculus
  • Matrix algebra and vectors
  • Vector spaces, metric spaces, Hilbert spaces
  • Linear operators
  • Spectral theorem and diagonalization of matrices
  • Inner products, quadratic forms and projections

A course in real analysis is strongly recommended.  As curricula can vary, please note that a suitable course would cover the following (in addition to the usual topics in derivatives and integrals):

  • Real and complex number systems
  • Basic point-set topology (compactness, continuity, connectedness)
  • Metric spaces
  • Numerical sequences, convergence, Cauchy sequences
  • Sequences and series of functions

For an example text, please see Rudin's “Principles of Mathematical Analysis” (known as 'Baby Rudin').

Application Fee

The application fee is $85.  The Duke University Graduate School does not waive this fee.

* Please note that the only method of applying to our Ph.D. program in Biostatistics is through the Duke University Graduate School application website: materials emailed or mailed to individual faculty members will not be reviewed by our Admissions Committee.