Section 1: Chapter 1

USMLE Biostatistics: Intro to USMLE Biostatistics and Epidemiology

Learn the fundamental elements of health research required to master the USMLE Step 1 and Step 2 CK biostatistics topics.

USMLE biostatistics

Chapter Objectives: 

In this intro to USMLE biostatistics and epidemiology, we will set the foundational knowledge that you will need throughout this course. In order to master the various USMLE Step 1 and Step 2 CK biostatistics topics, you need to have a solid understanding of the framework and structure of health and medical research. In this video lecture, we will introduce this framework as well as introduce relevant high yield USMLE biostatistics topics in the process. By the end of this lecture, you will have an introductory understanding of the main elements of health and medical research including the following:

  • Types of health and medical research
  • Role of research in medicine
  • Designing and planning research 
  • Phases of a research study
  • Basic elements of research (the research question, the research hypothesis, & the research variables)
  • Data interpretation and the role of statistics (and math) in research
  • Proving or disproving the research hypothesis, aka hypothesis testing 
  • Errors in research; bias and random error 
  • Evaluating research performance; accuracy and precision
This is an intro to USMLE biostatistics and epidemiology and all of the topics mentioned will be carefully dissected and analyzed in the following chapters. In the next chapter, chapter 2, we will take a more in-depth analysis of the fundamental elements of health research and how to analyze medical research both in practice and in USMLE/board examinations. We will discuss how to understand and apply the research question, how to identify the main study variables (exposure variables, outcome variables and confounding variables), and how to identify the type of study data used (qualitative data & quantitative data) as well as its implications.

Chapter Details 

  • Video length: 22 min 
  • Practice exercises: 9 USMLE style multiple choice questions
  • Estimated time to complete video lecture and practice exercises: 45 min 
  • Next chapter: Chapter 2 – Research Questions, Types of Variables, & Types of Data 


Thanks for watching our lecture! Solidify everything you have just learned by completing some USMLE style practice questions! Click the link below!


Fletcher, G. S. (2012). Clinical epidemiology: The essentials [5th Edition]. Philadelphia ; Baltimore ; New York: Wolters Kluwer. Retrieved from

Leave a Reply

Scroll to Top