How to become a statistician (Epidemiologist) If I have not measured in Statistics

#1
:yup: Hello There I am a masters student in health science. By health science I mean a mix of epidemiology, psychology, and health policy. It is a great major but I am leaning more toward epidemiology. But as you know It is not worth it to go back to school to get a MSc in Epi because there is so much i already know and getting two masters is like 1 masters.

So I am asking since I am not a hardcore math statistician person, will I have any future in epidemiology if I just independently and thoroughly study everything and improve myself....or will I have no future in this field...

Some of the people in the field that i know are not hardcore statisticians but every job posting that I see in epi they do not want Health science, MPH people...they all want hardcore statistician math people which has made me really upset...

SORRY for the typo, I meant Majored

Any advice friends?
 
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#2
Re: How to become a statistician (Epidemiologist) If I have not measured in Statistic

Anyone? I really appreciate your insightful comments...
 

hlsmith

Less is more. Stay pure. Stay poor.
#3
Re: How to become a statistician (Epidemiologist) If I have not measured in Statistic

I can probably provide quite a bit of information for you (I am an epidemiologist). Absolutely love it.

But I think a big question for you is what about it do you like or are interested in. I say this because there are different tracks. I know people in labs that run no stats at all. If you did or did not get a MSc what would you want to do in the field (e.g., work on studies, clinical trials, etc.). The big misconception that I see is that normal people think we are dermatologists and many others think we only investigate infectious diseases, which neither are fully true. The foundations were based on ID, but that is now just a subsect, there is genetic, oncology, etc.

What exactly would be your current degree - MPH and if so what program are you actually housed in. I think the MSc may be an option if you really want to go in that direction. I would guess that you have prerequisites done along with some core and elective coursework. The thing to also consider is cost. I wouldn't exactly say a master degree is a master degree, since you would likely have a MPH and MSc. How far along are you - can you apply to switch programs?

Feel free to ask any questions you have, by the way I love the stats part, but not all epi-folks even do stats.
 

Mean Joe

TS Contributor
#4
Re: How to become a statistician (Epidemiologist) If I have not measured in Statistic

Some of the people in the field that i know are not hardcore statisticians but every job posting that I see in epi they do not want Health science, MPH people...they all want hardcore statistician math people which has made me really upset...
I can't speak for how to get the job you want. But my input would be to not be discouraged by "the wording" of job ads. They may just be voicing it in a way to draw people with math degrees too. Because people with math degrees may not have ever thought about a job in epidemiology.

You may not feel you are qualified in terms of the degree they state they are looking for, but the fact usually is that the work provider is not so strict in what you need. Especially if you can show them you have experience and/or are a dedicated worker. (A degree largely shows that you can make a plan and stick to it for a couple of years, regardless of what you got it in...like you said, 2 Masters is not much different from 1 Masters).

There's always going to be some learning on the job, as jobs adopt new software etc. You don't need to know everything before you apply for a job.
 

hlsmith

Less is more. Stay pure. Stay poor.
#5
Re: How to become a statistician (Epidemiologist) If I have not measured in Statistic

I agree with Mean Joe and would also like to say, while as a student you have a great opportunity to work in these areas a a graduate assistant or help out your professors. This can help build your CV, get your foot in the door, provide info on whether it is the right tract, and let you know where difficiencies may be in you education.

Can you take your electives in the epidemiology department, and/or take a couple of extra classes to round out the edges? There probably is no harm graduating with a few more credits if it helps get you in a field you may like a little bit more.