MA in Biomedical Informatics

The Free Standing Master of Arts (MA) program prepares students for practical, hands-on careers in informatics. Graduates have gone on to work at hospitals, entered industry, or enrolled in PhD programs. The program is appropriate for students from a wide range of backgrounds, and it can be pursued either full-time or part-time.

Degree Requirements

30 points of Columbia University graduate (4000 level and above) coursework and 2 residence units

All courses are taken for a letter grade, with the exception of BINF G4099 Research Seminar (P/F based on attendance). Students must earn a grade of B or above to count courses towards DBMI degree requirements. Academic advisors approve individual course plans. Satisfactory academic progress is monitored by means of reporting forms (insert link) due at the end of fall and spring terms.

Master’s Essay
Every master’s student completes a research project, enrolling in BINF G6001 Projects in Biomedical Informatics for 3 points and completing a Master’s Essay. The content of the MA essay and deliverables is at the sole discretion of the research advisor.  The Essay is the culmination of the research project.  It requires two faculty readers, one of whom is the research advisor from the projects section in which the student enrolled; the other is a faculty member appointed within the department chosen by the research advisor and student. Fulfillment of the MA essay is designated by the successful completion of the MA essay form.  This form must be completed and submitted to the relevant faculty (research advisor, 2nd faculty reader appointed as faculty in DBMI, chair) with sufficient time for review, and to the final reviewer, the department chair, at least a minimum of one month prior to the GSAS degree conferral dates (February, May, October) found online through the academic calendar on the University Registrar’s website. Failure to adhere to deadlines may result in a delay of graduation to the next eligible degree conferral period.

With the exception of postdoctoral research fellows funded by our National Library of Medicine Training Grant, DBMI does not provide financial support for those in the Master’s Program. Eligible students may apply for educational loans. Master’s students seeking financial support should visit the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences Student Financial Services website.  There are neither teaching nor research assistantships in the department to which students may apply.

Students apply for the MA degree through the Registrar’s website the semester preceding their anticipated date of degree conferral (degrees are conferred in February, May and October).

For international students, the ability to work while pursuing a degree may depend upon visa status (see International Students and Scholars Office and information specific to international student applicants provided by their office). There is no course in our department for which you may qualify for CPT while enrolled. Internships are not required for our MA degree. Previous graduates have been able to apply for OPT post-degree as permitted by the University. You may consult with the ISSO office on the main campus once enrolled for policies and procedures on how to apply for OPT.