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Frequently Asked


Visit each of the FAQ sections below to learn more.


Prospective Students

Prospective Student Inquiries

  • Which degrees are offered at a distance?

    The master's and certificate programs can be completed 100% online with the option of in-person courses offered at our Houston campus. The Certificate and Masters programs in Applied Biomedical Informatics are only available online.

    The Doctor of Philosophy in Biomedical Informatics is a full-time, in-house program.

    The Doctorate in Health Informatics (for executive-level professionals seeking a terminal, applied degree in the field of health informatics) is a hybrid with more than 50% of the coursework taught online.

  • What mediums are used when taking a course at a distance?
  • Can credits transfer from SBMI program to SBMI program?

    Yes; courses taken in an SBMI certificate program with a grade of a “B” or higher are transferrable into an applicable SBMI masters and doctoral programs. The specific academic programs build upon themselves.

  • How long does it take to complete a program at SBMI?

    Students enrolled full-time usually complete the certificate in two semesters and the master’s in five semesters. Students enrolled part-time must complete the certificate in three years and the master’s in eight years.

    Average time for completion of the Doctor of Philosophy in Biomedical Informatics program is four to five years.

    Average time for completion of the Doctorate in Health Informatics is four years.

    Note that maximum program lengths vary depending on year and semester of program entry. Please refer to a specific catalog for more details.

  • Does SBMI offer informational sessions to interested applicants?

    SBMI holds informational webinars several times a year to discuss the programs we offer and the admissions process with prospective students. To see a list of upcoming webinar dates, click here: Prospective SBMI Student Webinar Sessions

    Prospective students can contact the SBMI Office of Academic Affairs at anytime and request a meeting to discuss our graduate programs.

  • What is the difference between the applied track and research biomedical informatics track?

    The applied track is more of a hands-on approach and students use different information systems to advance patient care. The applied track curriculum educates students in the correct and safe utilization of information systems to promote better quality of care for patients.

    The research track focuses more on an abstract approach to information systems used in the healthcare field. This can include natural language processing techniques used for building clinical decision support systems or formulating algorithms used for health care datamining.

    In essence, students in the research track pilot processes and innovate new technologies that are then evaluated, implemented and utilized daily by students in the applied track.

  • Is the Ph.D. program offered part-time?

    There is no part-time Ph.D. program. The master's and certificate programs are all offered part-time.

  • What is the 4+1 program? Who can apply?

    Students enrolled at TAMIU or Texas A&M International University have the opportunity to complete the graduate certificate in biomedical informatics during their fourth year of undergraduate study.

    The 4+1 allows for SBMI graduate courses to satisfy advanced program electives in the majors of biomedical science, applied technology, biology, psychology, mathematics, and computer science.

    Upon graduation from TAMIU, these students have the opportunity to complete the remaining master’s in biomedical informatics program requirements at SBMI in one year.

  • Does SBMI require students to have health insurance coverage?

    Yes, all students must be covered by private health insurance or an insurance policy obtained under the Affordable Care Act. Student who do not have insurance can purchase a policy provided by the UT System by clicking HERE or online at during open enrollment.

  • If I missed the application deadline, am I eligible to take SBMI classes now and wait to apply next year?

    No; you must apply for and be offered admission to the school to be eligible to enroll in SBMI classes

Enrollment and Admissions

Cost and Financial Aid

Current Students

Current Student Inquiries

  • What is the process for getting an academic advisor?

    School of Biomedical Informatics students are advised by both faculty advisors and advising staff. Faculty advisors direct students in curricular studies and research advancement/opportunities, while the advising staff assists students with enrollment, student administration, and paperwork.

    Advisors are assigned to new students upon admission to the School of Biomedical Informatics. Newly admitted students are provided the name of their academic advisor in their admissions letters. The advisor is also listed in myUTH. If a student should want to change Academic Advisors at any point in their graduate program, a Change of Academic Advisor form signed by the current and new advisor will need to be submitted to the SBMI Office of Academic Affairs.

    Request to Change Advisor

  • If I am a distance education student, can I still receive a student ID?

    Yes, a request will need to be sent to the Office of Academic Affairs ( including a jpeg file of a head shot (ending at the shoulder) and the mailing address to where you would like the badge mailed.

  • How do I clear my health insurance hold in MyUTH?

    This PDF will give you directions for clearing your health insurance hold.



  • What is the graduation checkout process?

    Students who are in their final semester of their academic program are added to a “Graduation/Certificate Completion” course in Canvas. Within that course are instructions for uploading required documents which must be submitted to the SBMI Office of Academic Affairs prior to the completion of their program. Failure to submit the required documents will result in a delay of the student receiving their certificate/diploma.