Departments & Programs


Major in Statistics—B.S.

The B.S. Degree in Statistics provides students with an education in the science of data and data analysis, including statistical theory, statistical computation, and practical applications. It teaches students to think critically about quantitative methodologies and prepares them for careers that involve analyzing data, including the possibility of graduate study in statistics. The program focuses on statistics as the science of data. Data are numbers with a context; the particular context that gave rise to the numbers is important. In addition to a knowledge of mathematics, statisticians must learn about the scientific disciplines that generate data of interest to understand and explain the observational studies or the statistical experiments in question. For example, statisticians calculate probabilities for DNA paternity tests; design clinical trials to study the effectiveness of new medications; study economic time series data, such as gross domestic product from developing countries in Africa; and develop statistical models of responses from fMRI psychological experiments.

Required Courses
  1. Writing: Students must fulfill the writing requirements for a B.A. in the College of Arts and Sciences (English Composition and Intensive Writing).
  2. Foreign language: 3 credit hours at or above the second-year level (or the equivalent proficiency).
  3. Arts and Humanities: Three courses.
  4. Social and Historical Studies: Three courses.
  5. Natural Sciences: Three courses, excluding courses in quantitative methodology (e.g., in statistics, mathematics, or computer science). These courses must be completed with a grade of C– or higher. Must include one Natural Science course in fulfillment of the General Education curriculum, which can be combined with the math courses required by the major.
  6. Critical Approaches: One course.
  7. Public Oral Communication: One course.
  8. Concentration requirements: The following ten courses (or their equivalents, as approved by the director of undergraduate studies) must be completed with a grade of C– or higher in each course.
    1. Basic Mathematics: M211, M212 or M213, M311 (Calculus I–III). The requirement of M211 and M212 can be waived for students who attain appropriate scores on advanced placement calculus tests.
    2. Mathematics for Statistics: M301 Linear Algebra and Applications or M303 Linear Algebra for Undergraduates or S303 Honors Course in Linear Algebra, M463 Introduction to Probability Theory I.
    3. Statistics: S320 Introduction to Statistics, S420 Introduction to Statistical Theory, S431 and S432 Applied Linear Models I-II, S490 Statistical Consulting.
  9. Concentration elective courses: At least 3 additional courses that concern the theory or practice of quantitative methodology. Ordinarily, these courses should be 400-level courses in or cross-listed with Statistics. Courses that are not cross-listed with Statistics must be approved by the director of undergraduate studies.
  10. Computer proficiency: Reasonable proficiency in computer programming demonstrated by earning a grade of at least a C– in CSCI-A 201, MATH-M 371, or an appropriate substitute approved by the director of undergraduate studies.

Students must also complete the degree requirements of the College of Arts and Sciences.