Department of Statistics
Chair: Scott D Grimshaw
Admission to Degree Program
All degree programs in the Department of Statistics, except Actuarial Science, are open enrollment. To major in Actuarial Science, a student must pass one exam of the Society of Actuaries (SOA), often Exam FM, before declaring an actuarial science major.
Statisticians help determine the sampling and data collection methods, monitor the execution of the study and the processing of data, and advise on the strengths and limitations of the results. They must understand the nature of uncertainties and be able to draw conclusions in the context of particular statistical applications.
Actuaries are business professionals who analyze the financial consequences of risk. Actuaries use statistics, mathematics, and financial theory to study uncertain future events, especially those of concern to insurance and pension programs. They evaluate the likelihood of those events and design creative ways to reduce the likelihood and decrease the impact of adverse events that actually do occur. Their work requires a combination of strong analytical skills, business knowledge, and understanding of human behavior to design and manage programs that control risk.
The curriculum and degrees offered through the Department of Statistics are designed to equip students with decision-making skills for careers as professional statisticians in industrial organizations, government agencies, insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies, universities, and research institutes. The technical tools statisticians acquire are useful in many areas, and for this reason a statistics degree is also excellent preparation for professional programs in business administration, medicine, law, and public administration.
It is recommended that a student complete the following courses in high school:
3 units of English.
1 unit of physical science, either chemistry or physics.
4 units of mathematics, consisting of 2.5 units of algebra, 1 unit of geometry, and 0.5 unit of trigonometry. This should qualify students to begin college mathematics with Math 112, analytic geometry and calculus.
Because mathematics provides the foundation for all work in the physical and mathematical sciences, particular attention is paid to high school preparation in this subject.
Students are encouraged to complete 15 credit hours each semester. Taking fewer credits substantially increases the cost and the number of semesters to graduate.
An integrated BS/MS program is available. This program allows Statistics students from all statistics emphases to receive their bachelor's and master's degree in five years of schooling. It is available to students who have taken Math 112, Math 113, Math 213, Math 215, Math 314, Stat 230, Stat, 240, Stat 330 and Stat 340 and have less than 6 credits left until completion of the bachelor's degree. Interested students must complete a department application by February 1 for admission the following Fall semester.
To receive a BYU bachelor's degree a student must complete, in addition to all requirements for a specific major, the following university requirements:
The University Core, consisting of requirements in general and religious education.
At least 30 credit hours must be earned in residence on the BYU campus in Provo as an admitted day student
A minimum of 120 credit hours
A cumulative GPA of at least 2.0
Be in good standing with the Honor Code Office
Students should see their college advisement center for help or information concerning the undergraduate programs.
Graduate Programs Available
This department also offers graduate degree programs. For more information, see Graduate Studies.