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Welcome to the website for the University of Missouri Institute for Data Science & Informatics (MUIDSI).

Welcome to MUIDSI

Check back frequently as we spread the word of our great interdisciplinary informatics program, highlighting our students’ success, alumni news, and research collaborations with numerous faculty and departments here on the MU campus and throughout the country.

A Message from the Director

Welcome to University of Missouri Institute for Data Science and Informatics (MUIDSI) web site!  MUIDSI is an interdisciplinary research and graduate education program offering a PhD in Informatics and an MS in Data Science & Analytics. Trainees have the option to choose bioinformatics, biomedical/health informatics, or geoinformatics emphasis areas for their PhD studies. The MS in Data Science and Analytics program offers several emphasis areas for both executive/on-line and on-campus programs. Managed and supported by the Vice Chancellor for Research Office and the Graduate School, the Institute has more than 60 core faculty members from 8 colleges/schools mentoring 120 graduate students. Among the current student body, 42 PhD students are sponsored by extramural funding, training grants, industry sponsorships, etc.  Incoming PhD students are encouraged to also pursue an MS degree in Data Science & Analytics as part of their PhD training.

Our Informatics PhD students come from a wide spectrum of academic backgrounds, such as physicians, nurses, computer scientists, data scientists, biologists, chemists, statisticians, engineers, social scientists, etc. In addition, the MD-PhD Informatics program was just launched in 2020 to recruit prospective medical students.

Our MS in Data Science and Analytics (DSA) program offers state-of-the-art Big Data Analytics training for working professionals and residential students for career advancement to secure data scientist positions in various sectors.  Our current emphasis areas include Geospatial Analytics, Biohealth Analytics, Data Journalism/Strategic Communication, High Performance Computing, and Human-Centered Data Design.  The online MS DSA program received the 2018 University Professional and Continuing Education Association (UPCEA) Central Region Outstanding Credit Program Award and ranked #7 on Fortune’s Best Online Master’s in Data Science Programs in 2022.

If you are a prospective student, please feel free to contact me and our leadership/administrative team for more information on the application process. We are always looking for top-notch students to join our fantastic faculty’s labs and centers.  If you are seeking tenure-track faculty positions with MUIDSI and partnering academic units, we have a strong track record mentoring junior faculty with NSF CAREER program and NIH K awards through our interdisciplinary research network. It is my honor to work with such talented faculty, students, alumni, and staff, as well as all the outstanding people associated with and supporting MUIDSI. No bias – informatics and data science rule!

Chi-Ren Shyu, Ph.D.

Director and Professor, Institute for Data Science and Informatics

Cutting-Edge Research

Established in 2008, MUIDSI has led the way in cutting edge informatics research.

We host 60 core faculty members from 24 departments and 9 colleges/schools that support our unique interdisciplinary doctoral degree program with emphasis/concentration areas in bioinformatics, health informatics, and geoinformatics.

As of Fall 2021, we will have 50 doctoral students in the program, with various backgrounds in biology, computer science, engineering, geography, medicine, management, and public health.  Our faculty and students conduct active informatics research with extramural funding from the NIH, NSF, AHRQ, USDA, CMS, US Department of Education, and other industry sponsors.

MUIDSI has one of the 16 NIH BD2K institutional pre-doctoral training sites in the country. Our graduates report a 100% placement rate, holding positions as ranked faculty and postdocs in academia, as well as researchers at National Laboratories and private sectors in business and industry. In addition to our PhD program, the Institute also hosts a newly approved Masters Degree in Data Science and Analytics.


Our Mission: Overview

Building on a tradition of outstanding informatics education and research at Missouri, the MU Institute for Data Science and Informatics is an interdisciplinary research and education program supported by 50 core faculty members from 24 departments and 9 colleges/schools, such as:

  • College of Engineering
  • School of Medicine
  • Sinclair School of Nursing
  • College of Arts and Sciences
  • College of Agriculture
  • Food & Natural Resources
  • School of Health Professionals
  • College of Education

The Institute, under the governance of the Graduate School, offers a doctoral degree program in the areas of bioinformatics, health informatics, and geoinformatics. Each concentration stresses the skill sets and research appropriate for the subfield within the broad area of informatics.

Our Mission: Components

Our mission has three components: education, research, and outreach.

To have a global impact in advancing computational research in biology and medicine, the stakeholders across the University of Missouri System believe it is critical to the mission of the university and the development of the community to offer a doctoral program in informatics, build an international-level research program, and provide service to scientific communities for informatics needs.


  • Providing an interdisciplinary training environment that leverages the unique strengths of the Columbia campus and other University of Missouri campuses.
  • Providing students with the core competencies and research skills to be productive and independent investigators in academia, industry, and public research institutions.
  • Meeting informatics workforce needs in research within the State of Missouri, the Midwest region, and at the national and international levels.


  • Building teams of faculty members and professionals to foster main informatics research thrusts.
  • Developing signature informatics research programs to seamlessly align with the local and international research trends in life sciences, geospatial sciences, and medicine.
  • Producing high impact informatics research in the forms of, extramural funding, publication, and international recognitions.


  • Partnering and sharing informatics resources with other campuses of the University of Missouri System, regional partners, and worldwide collaborators.
  • Disseminating informatics tools, providing web servers for advanced informatics analyses/search, and making research results/data available for others.
  • Supporting entrepreneurial activities to develop high tech industry in the region.