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Biomedical Informatics

Biomedical informatics is the interdisciplinary, scientific field that studies and pursues the effective uses of biomedical data, information, and knowledge for scientific inquiry, problem solving, and decision making motivated by efforts to improve human health.

Biomedical informatics has become a core element across the entire spectrum of biomedicine, from biology to medicine to public health. The demand for individuals with training in biomedical informatics is growing rapidly, particularly in light of recent national emphasis on personalized medicine, clinical and translational science, electronic health records, health care reform, public health surveillance, and global health.

Formal training in biomedical informatics requires a unique blend of computational, biomedical domain, and information management skills and knowledge. UVM’s Sequence in Biomedical Informatics is focused on providing fundamental theoretic and applied informatics skills necessary for research, applied/operational, or expert/liaison positions in academic, non-profit, hospital, industry, or public service settings. This sequence is designed as a crosscutting, transdisciplinary experience for students and requires students to complete a minimum of 18 credit hours (that may be done on a part time basis). The curriculum includes a combination of formal coursework and practical education through a hands-on practicum experience.

Careers in biomedical informatics exist in a broad range of environments including clinical care and research, personal health management, public and population health, health policy, and translational science.

AMIA is the professional home for biomedical informatics. UVM is a member of the AMIA Academic Forum, which is dedicated to serving the needs of post-baccalaureate biomedical informatics training programs.

The Sequence in Biomedical Informatics offers two tracks:

  • The Bioinformatics track (Bio) focuses on informatics as applied for cellular and molecular biology, with a particular emphasis on genomics. Translational bioinformatics is specifically concerned with the application to human health.
  • The Health Informatics track (Health) seeks to cover various health-related domains, such as clinical informatics in healthcare settings; population informatics in public health settings; and informatics in specific healthcare disciplines (e.g. nursing, dental, pathology, and veterinary informatics) and emerging sub-disciplines (e.g., clinical research and translational informatics).

For either track, the curriculum involves a combination of courses in the following areas:

Bio Health Course Title Instructor Credit Semester
Core Informatics (9 credits)
x x CTS 395 Introduction to Biomedical Informatics Sarkar 3 Fall
x x CTS 395 Applied Biomedical Informatics Chen 3 Spring
x MMG 231 Programming in Bioinformatics* Sarkar 3 Spring (alternating-even)
x MMG 296 Methods in Bioinformatics* Sarkar 3 Spring (alternating-odd)
x x CTS 235 Informatics Practicum Chen/Sarkar 3 Fall/Spring/ Summer

* If both are taken, one may be used to fulfill the Computational Competency

  • Domain Competency (3 credits): demonstrate competency (e.g., familiarity with concepts, terminology, and methods) in the domain of interest (e.g., biology, medicine, or public health).)
  • Computational Competency (3 credits): demonstrate the ability to apply computational techniques to manage data, develop software, and solve problems.)
  • Mathematical Competency (3 credits): demonstrate the ability to apply mathematical techniques to analyze data and test hypotheses)
  • Electives (0 or more credits): courses from a range of departments and programs to supplement the core, domain, computational, and mathematical courses.)
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