Monday, January 26, 2015

Recommended Books to Help You Prepare for the USMLE Biostatistics Section

The USMLE, as well as board certification examinations, almost all contain questions on basic statistics. A good review of biostatistics thus is helpful for both physicians in training and practicing physicians. As a teacher of bioastatistics for medical students, I've had the opportunity to review a large number of biostatistic review guides, and as a researcher frequently use several references which are helpful for the physician interested in more in-depth learning.
  • First Aid for the USMLE Step 1. This review has a nice, short section on biostatistics that covers most of the basics. You don't need to get the latest version of this book, obviously, because the basic concepts of biostatistics doesn't change.
  • High-Yield Biostatistics. This is a very well written book, which addresses biostatistics, epidemiology, and public health with the USMLE Step 1 exam in mind. This contains more in-depth information on biostatistics than most people will require or want, but it is a good reference and highly recommended.
  • PDQ Statistics. This small book covers biostatistics with the researcher in mind. It has good chapter summaries, and especially good pitfalls to watch out for when performing statistics or reading the medical literature.
  • How to Lie with Statistics. Required reading for all physicians.
  • Basic and Clinical Biostatistics. This is a fantastic reference book. It covers the topic too extensively to be used as a quick review guide, however, it is an excellent reference that physicians engaged in research should have on their bookshelf.