Statistics is an interdisciplinary field that offers many career options, leaving many individuals wondering what they can do with a Master’s in Statistics. Statistics has long been a very popular career choice because it does offer many different jobs, and it also has excellent job growth and wage potential. In the past, when students had a knack for and love of math, they had only a few career choices, like math teacher or tutor. Today, statistics has brought a lot more to the table in terms of career choices, especially for those with a Master’s in Statistics.
What is Statistics?
Statistics is a science or field that deals with developing and researching ways to collect, analyze, interpret and present anything data-related. An individual who works in statistics spends most of the time studying and analyzing mathematical theories and variables. They may also use their knowledge of mathematical theories and statistics to solve business problems. Almost any time someone bases a decision on past variables, they’re using statistics.
An individual with a strong interest in statistics and math often chooses to become a statistician. A statistician often works with other professionals to solve problems. For instance, if an automobile manufacturer is trying to learn why a vehicle performs in a certain manner, a statistician may help by collecting and analyzing data for the manufacturer.
What a Master’s in Statistics is Like
Students pursuing a Master’s in Statistics can expect to be in college for around six years if he or she is starting from scratch. If the individual already has a bachelor’s degree, he or she will be in school for another two-to-three years. The curriculum includes elective and required courses. Elective courses may include fundamentals of molecular evolution; random vibrations; computational and mathematical engineering; discrete mathematics and algorithms; microeconomics and intro to databases.
Required courses might include:
- Applied Statistics
- Theoretical Statistics
- Stochastic Processes
- Industrial Research for Statisticians
- Applied Matrix Theory
Depending on the school, the program may require that students also complete an internship with an approved employer.
Jobs with a Master’s in Statistics
When a person thinks of the master’s degree in statistics, a career as a statistician usually comes to mind first. While this is a very lucrative and exciting career, there are other jobs available to someone who earns a Master’s in Statistics.
- Applied Statistician
- Market Research Analyst
- Operations Research Analyst
- Financial Analyst
- Statistical Consultant
Career Outlook for Statisticians
In 2015, Fortune did a survey of the best and worst graduate degrees for jobs. The best degrees have consistently been STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) with statistics at the top of the list. Statisticians, who are highly in demand, are expected to see a job growth of 34 percent from 2016-2026, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Statistician wages ranged from $50,660 to $133,720 with the average annual wage at $88,980 as of a May 2017 report by the bureau. The average hourly rate for statisticians was $42.78.
Dealing with numbers and statistics can be challenging but also a lot of fun. An individual doesn’t need to be a statistician to reap the benefits a statistics degree can bring. There so many things one can do with a Master’s in Statistics, which can make it a valuable and worthwhile academic choice for the right individual.