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Department Information

The Department of Statistical Science offers a Master’s of Applied Statistics and Data Analytics (MASDA) and Ph.D. degrees in Statistical Science and Biostatistics. These programs integrate theory and practice by providing a strong theoretical foundation through courses in mathematical statistics, probability, and stochastic processes, and by emphasizing the practice of statistics through applied courses such as regression, time series, nonparametrics, and clinical trials.

The faculty of the Department of Statistical Science consists of internationally renowned scholars who are also widely recognized for their expertise in applying statistical science in very diverse settings including clinical trials, air pollution, medical imagery, census adjustment, educational testing, genetics, and educational intervention studies.

Degrees Offered

Explore our three degree options to see which one fits your interests: 

Explore our Master’s in Applied Statistics and Data Analytics (MASDA)

Explore our Statistical Science and Biostatistics Ph.D. Programs

Southern Methodist University Facilities

These programs have the goal of both maximizing each student's knowledge in their chosen field of study and preparing him or her for research and a future career in academia and/or private industry.

Computer Facilities

Computer Facilities

The Department of Statistical Science has access to high-performance computing clusters on SMU’s campus. The SMU HPC facility encompasses multiple compatible clusters, known as ManeFrame (one of the top 500 fastest supercomputers in the world) and SMUHPC. The resources on both clusters are freely available for research and educational use to all faculty and students.

SMU Statistical Consulting Center

SMU Statistical Consulting Center

The SMU Statistical Consulting Center assists scholars, businesses, and organizations by applying statistical expertise to a variety of data analytics projects. Through this service, experienced faculty members in the Department of Statistical Science and supervised Ph.D. and M.S. graduate students can provide help in all phases of research or data related projects, including:

  • Effective data collection strategies
  • Predictive analytics
  • Empirical model building
  • Database management and statistical computing
  • Forecasting
  • Data mining
  • Data visualization

Working with faculty in the Statistical Consulting Center gives graduate students valuable experience communicating with and working with industry leaders to solve real-world statistical problems while still in school.

Admission Requirements

Minimum requirements for admission to the MASDA degree program are as follows: 

Applicants must: 

  • hold a Bachelor's degree
  • have taken a course in statistics
  • have taken calculus courses through multivariate calculus
  • have excellent English communication skills

The GRE General Test is required (SMU code is 6660).

International students applying from countries where English is not the native language are required to provide scored on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) (SMU code is 6660). The Video Essay component is also required for all international applicants to any master’s or doctoral program in the Department of Statistical Science.

 

 

Minimum requirements for admission to the Ph.D. program in Statistical Science are as follows:

  • Applicants must hold a Bachelor's degree and must have taken mathematics courses through advanced calculus and linear algebra.
  • A degree in a major such as mathematics, statistics or engineering is preferred.
  • Excellent English communication skills (both speaking and writing) are required.

The GRE General Test is required (SMU code is 6660).

International students applying from countries where English is not the native language are required to provide scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) (SMU code is 6660). The Video Essay component is also required for all international applicants to any master’s or doctoral program in the Department of Statistical Science.

Minimum requirements for admission to the Ph.D. program in Biostatistics are as follows:

  • Applicants must hold a Bachelor's degree and must have taken mathematics courses through advanced calculus and linear algebra.
  • A degree in a major such as mathematics, statistics or engineering is preferred.
  • Excellent English communication skills (both speaking and writing) are required.
  • Some background in Biology or Medicine is preferred but is not a requirement for admission.

The GRE General Test is required (SMU code is 6660).

International students applying from countries where English is not the native language are required to provide scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) (SMU code is 6660). The Video Essay component is also required for all international applicants to any master’s or doctoral program in the Department of Statistical Science.

Deadlines for Admission

Program Specific Priority Deadlines for Fall Admission:

  • Ph.D. Priority Deadline – December 15th*
  • MASDA Priority Deadline – February 1st
  • MASDA Final Deadline – May 1st

*Note: Ph.D. applications received after the priority deadline will be considered on a space-available basis.


Departmental Assistantships

Teaching and Research Assistantships are available to Ph.D. applicants only. All applications to be considered for department assistantships must be completed by the priority deadline of December 15th.*

Financial aid is available for outstanding applicants to the Ph.D. in Statistical Science and Ph.D. in Biostatistics programs. In both programs, the financial aid covers SMU tuition, fees, and a health insurance subsidy.

*Note: Applications received after the priority deadlines will be considered for any remaining funds and openings.

Assistantships are not available for MASDA applicants, but some scholarship funding may be available. Applicants are considered at the time of application review. Additional information on graduate tuition and fees can be found here.

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Degree Requirements

Students must successfully complete at least 36 hours of coursework acceptable to the departmental faculty, including courses in Mathematical Statistics, Statistical Analysis, Statistical Consulting, and Statistical Computing. A basic written examination on first-year courses and an oral examination on an assigned project are required.

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Ph.D. candidates in statistics must satisfy all the curricular requirements as specified by the University and by the departmental faculty. These requirements include: pass comprehensive written and oral examinations; complete a minimum of sixty semester hours of graduate work, with at least two semesters in full-time residence at Southern Methodist University or at a research facility approved by the departmental faculty and the University; and write and defend a dissertation.

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The Department of Statistical Science at SMU and the Department of Population & Data Sciences at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas (UTSW) have partnered to offer a Ph.D. program in Biostatistics. The degree will be conferred by SMU, but students in this program will take courses at both SMU and UTSW. Students attain a strong mathematical and statistical foundation such as that provided in the Ph.D. in Statistical Science curriculum, but they will also take courses that prepare them for a research career in Biostatistics. During the third and fourth years of the curriculum, students will work with researchers at UTSW under the joint supervision of one or more SMU faculty mentors.

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Alumni Success Stories

Bingchen Liu
Data Scientist/Statistician for the
Educational Testing Service (ETS)

 
Elizabeth Ribble

Professor in the Mathematics at
Metropolitan State University of Denver

Questions?

Do not hesitate to contact your program of interest with any questions you might have!

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