To complete the program, students are required to complete course work and the practicum with good performance. The performance of course work will be evaluated with a numeric grade with a minimum of second class standing in all (65%).
The practicum is culminated with a report which will be examined by an Examination Committee. The examination is to be approximately one hour of which the first 20 minutes will be devoted to an oral presentation by the student. The practicum will be evaluated on a pass/fail basis.
The objective of the Collaborative Master Program in Biostatistics is to provide students with a unique opportunity to develop the analytic skills and practical experience needed to interact with practitioners and to work on current research projects in a variety of health areas. This objective is achieved through coursework and a practicum. After the student has successfully completed the required courses (6 core courses and 2 elective courses), he/she will start the 4 month practicum placement.
The objectives of the practicum are to give students the opportunity (i) to develop the analytical, technical and interpersonal skills required for a biostatistician to work effectively in the multi-disciplinary health research environments, and (ii) to apply the biostatistics research and analytic skills that they have learned in coursework to multi-disciplinary projects within health research groups in universities, hospitals, government agencies, industries and other related settings. Through the practicum placements, the experience that students gain in consulting, communication, report writing and team work will allow them to develop their consulting expertise.
There are two forms of practicum:
Four months prior to the start of the practicum (December), students should discuss with their academic supervisors how they will complete the practicum requirement for their degree. For students choosing to complete the application practicum this will include discussion on possible placements. It is the responsibility of the supervisor to provide possible placements for their students.
Students choosing to do a methodology practicum will complete the practicum proposal form (Appendix I) with their supervisor documenting the objectives of the practicum, planned activities, possible biostatistical methodology developed through practicum, and potential contribution of the students in the placement.
Students choosing to do an application practicum, will first need to decide in consultation with their academic supervisor where (practicum site) they will do their practicum. Once this has been decided, the student will set up a meeting with both their on-site supervisor and academic supervisor to discuss their practicum project and to complete the practicum proposal form (Appendix I) documenting the objectives of the practicum, planned activities, the skills and competencies expected to acquire through practicum, and potential contribution of the students in the placement.
One month before the practicum starts, the completed practicum proposal form should be submitted to the program committee of the Collaborative MSc Program in Biostatistics for final approval and signatures.
The supervisor will play an import role into the intellectual development and education development of the students. The supervisor will act as a mentor and assist students in developing a plan of study to meet their academic objectives. This may include:
The students will write a practicum report after they complete their placement. For students undertaking application practicum, the report may consist of:
For students undertaking a methodology practicum, the practicum report may include:
The practicum report should demonstrate a satisfactory general mastery of statistical knowledge and capability of problem solving. The final practicum report should be submitted through the academic supervisor to the Examination Committee before the end of August.
The academic supervisor will assemble a Practicum Examination Committee to evaluate the student’s practicum performance, the practicum report and oral presentation of the report. Each member of the Committee will receive an overall assessment of the students’ performance during placement (Appendix II final completed form) and the practicum report two weeks prior the date of examination. The Examination Committee will consist of at least three faculty members: the supervisor, and two other members, one doubling as chair. The committee shall have at least one faculty member from each of the two participating Departments. The exam is to be approximately one hour of which the first 20 minutes will be devoted to an oral presentation by the student. The balance of time will be devoted to questioning. After the questioning the candidate will be asked to leave the room. The Examining Committee will then discuss the overall assessment provided by the academic supervisor or on-site supervisor for those students who completed an application practicum, the quality of the research report and of the candidate's presentation. The Examining Committee will then vote on the outcome of the exam. There are two possible outcomes: Pass and Fail. The decision is made by a majority vote of the Examining Committee. A tie will be taken as Fail.
|Topic?||Practicum proposal||Approval||Start practicum||Finish, report, present|
During practicum, students are advised to set one day a week to prepare practicum report and presentation. While in August, students are expected to spend most of their time focusing on report writing and presentation.
Appendix I: Practicum Proposal Form (191 KB)
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