The Department of Public Health was first created at the University of Massachusetts Amherst (then known as Massachusetts State College) in 1938. It joined the newly established School of Health Sciences in 1973, and later was part of the 1993 reorganization that resulted in the School of Public Health and Health Sciences (SPHHS) with the merger of the traditional Public Health disciplines with closely aligned health sciences, specifically Nutrition, Kinesiology, and Communication Disorders, to form a unit unique in its interdisciplinary approach.

In the fall of 2014, the Faculty Senate at UMass Amherst voted to grant departmental status to the three divisions within the former Department of Public Health. As a result, the division of Biostatistics and Epidemiology became the Department of Biostatistics and Epidemiology.

The Biostatistics program has been in existence for nearly 40 years, and has trained and placed graduates in all sectors of biomedical research in the New England area and beyond. A distinguishing feature of the program is the close contact students have with the faculty, and the frequent involvement in research. The program boasts an excellent faculty, and a number of distinguished graduates with M.P.H., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees, who are leading the way in solving the complex challenges to the public’s health and well-being.