Department of Statistics Undergraduate Home

Major in Statistics

STATISTICS IS A COMPETITIVE MAJORThe application deadline is the first Friday of September. We accept students once a year.

If you take Summer Quarter classes, you must wait to apply until after your Summer Quarter grades are included on your transcript. (This wait will not delay the consideration of your application.)

Note: We will likely admit students to the major in stages, with the first group of admissions targeted for two weeks after the application deadline. The typical newly admitted statistics major will primarily be fulfilling their mathematics requirements during their first year. Thus, read the next section very carefully.

DECLARING THE MAJOR: Be aware of the following POTENTIAL BOTTLENECK. The demand for MATH 300, MATH 327 and STAT 340 (taken in this order) is large enough that you may have to be an officially declared Statistics major even to enroll in MATH 300. Priority for enrollment in Math 300 is very tight, and priority is given to declared majors in various Mathematical Sciences. Thus, you must be diligent as you seek to enroll in Math 300 and then MATH 327 before you can enroll in STAT 340 in a timely fashion. The part of the suggested program on the back that shows CSE 142 and MATH 307 in the Freshman year deals with the issue of becoming a Statistics major as soon as possible in order to secure a timely enrollment in MATH 300, and it could be essential in order to complete a Statistics major in 4 years. (If you are able to enroll in MATH 300 in the Spring quarter of your Freshman year, that would give you the greatest flexibility.)

Bachelor of Science
Suggested First-and-Second-Year College Courses: CSE 142, MATH 307, MATH 308, STAT 302 (recommended) or CSE 143, and STAT 311. Additional courses in the sciences and quantitative methods add strength to this major.

Department Admission Requirements

Application to the BS degree program in statistics is competitive. Completion of minimum requirements described below does not guarantee admission. All applicants have the right to petition and appeal the department's admission decision. Applications are considered once each academic year and are due on the first Friday of September.

Minimum course requirements for admission applications as follows:

  1. MATH 124, MATH 125, MATH 126 (or MATH 134, MATH 135, MATH 136)
  2. One of the following: STAT 311 (highly recommended), STAT 390, or an approved substitute
  3. At least two additional courses from CSE 142, either STAT 302 (recommended) or CSE 143, MATH 307, and MATH 308
  4. Factors in the admission decision include, but are not limited to, academic performance as measured by GPA in courses listed above and any additional advanced quantitative courses presented for application consideration
  5. Admission is competitive. Successful applicants typically have a cumulative GPA higher than 3.00 in courses listed above under course requirements, with no individual course grade lower than 2.5

Graduation Requirements

    Minimum 70 credits, as follows:
  1. Mathematics (30 Credits): either MATH 1245, MATH 1255, MATH 1265, MATH 3073, MATH 3083, MATH 3003, MATH 3273, MATH 3283, or else the honors sequence MATH 1345, MATH 1355, MATH 1365, MATH 3345, MATH 3355, and MATH 3365.
  2. Computing (7-9 Credits): CSE 1424; either STAT 3023 (recommended, but not always available), CSE 1435, or an approved substitute.
  3. Statistics (24-27 Credits): STAT 3115 (highly recommend), or STAT 3904 (STAT 2205 or STAT 2215 is seldom allowed as a substitute). Ether STAT 3404 (highly recommend) or both STAT/MATH 3943 and STAT/MATH 3953. (Note that both STAT 394/MATH 394 and STAT 395/MATH 395 are required to replace STAT 340 as a prerequisite for STAT 341.)
    STAT 3414, STAT 3424, STAT 4214, STAT 4234.
    Note that STAT 342 is required for enrollment in STAT 421 or STAT 423. Thus STAT 390 is not sufficient for a Statistics major to register for STAT 421 or STAT 423. (Such students will no longer be able to register, and any that might slip through the cracks will no longer receive credit toward the major.)
  4. Electives (at least 3 courses with at least 9 Credits): All elective choices require prior approval by a Statistics Undergraduate Advisor. (Please read all comments below pertaining to Electives.)
  5. Minimum grade of 2.0 in all courses used to satisfy major requirements.
  6. Minimum cumulative GPA of 2.50 for all courses used to satisfy major requirements.


Other Major Options: double majors are a possibility

ACMS option in Statistics: The Statistics pathway within the Applied and Computational Mathematical Sciences program is also a recommended alternative BS degree. (Statistics majors could consider this option as an alternative.)

Mathematics:The Handbook for Undergraduates on the Department of Mathematics website lists several sample programs for the B.S. in Mathematics, with emphasis on different substantive areas. Statistics majors may find these helpful when delineating their own plans.

For students intending graduate studies: It is strongly recommended that you take as much additional upper level mathematics as possible. Math 3093 is always a good choice, but it is not suitable as an Elective. MATH 4243, 4253, 4263 may be an appropriate choice for students planning graduate study, but could also be a very poor choice. Thus, it is required to talk with one of the Undergraduate Advisers prior to choosing your electives.

Recommended Scheduling: Complete all required Mathematics courses plus STAT 311 and STAT 302 by the end of sophomore year. Complete STAT 340-341-342 in junior year and STAT 421 and 423 in senior year. Three Elective courses are also required--they require prior approval.

Additional Scheduling Notes: The choices of Electives vary considerably from year to year. The only STAT course recommended for the major that is offered in summer is STAT 311. STAT 340, 341, 342, 421, 423 and electives are typically offered only once per year (see schedule below). Students considering seeking summer internships (these are seldom available) between the Junior and Senior years should certainly take STAT 302 during their sophomore year. Most of the electives offered by the Department of Statistics itself are offered only during the Spring quarter. Thus, it is typical for students to graduate at the end of Spring quarter and it is difficult to do otherwise. Typically, at least two electives are taken in the Spring quarter of the final year. (STAT/Math 394 and STAT/Math 395 are also offered in Summer Quarters.)

Electives: A separate departmental handout offers some discussion of possible Electives.

Sample Program

  Autumn Winter Spring Summer
Freshman M1241
CSE 1423
Comment: Apply for STAT BS by the 1st Friday of September.  (But, Autumn Math classes are already full; eg.  M300, M327, M328.), as registration for Autumn courses typically begins in early May.
Sophomore M3083 M3004
M3274 (or Math 300 alternative)
(or, Math 327 alternative)
(or, Math 300 alternative)
Junior S3406,7
or both of 394-3956 (or, M3284 here)
S3416,7 S342
(Possible elective slot)
Senior S4218 S423 Remaining Electives9  
  1. Students entering with AP credit for M124 or M124-M125 can likely take M308 prior to applying for admission.
  2. STAT 220, STAT 221, or STAT 301 is rarely allowed as a suitable substitute. STAT 311 is a better choice than STAT 390.
  3. Enrollment in CSE 142, Math 307, and Math 308 is possible for a student working to be admitted to the Statistics major.  (Additional significantly mathematical courses could also be of value in applying for admission to the Statistics major.  No suggestions will be offered.)
  4. Capacity does not meet demand for Math 300, Math 327, and Math 328—and may not meet demand for STAT 340, STAT 341, STAT 342, STAT 421 and STAT 423.
  5.  The quarter when STAT 302 is offered could vary from year to year, and it will not always be offered.   If not, use CSE 143.
  6. STAT 311 and a minimum grade of 2.5 in Math 327 is required to enroll in either STAT 340 or STAT 341.
  7. The combination of both STAT/ MATH 394 and 395 may be used to replace STAT 340 as a prerequisite to STAT 341.  If so, STAT 311 and a minimum grade of 2.5 in Math 327 is also required prior to either STAT 340 or STAT 341.
  8. All Statistics majors MUST complete STAT 342 prior to enrolling in STAT 421 and 423. (STAT 390 is NOT  sufficient for a Statistics major to enroll in either STAT 421 or STAT 423.
  9. Both STAT/MATH 395 and STAT/MATH 396 will typically be approved as electives if both are completed.  (STAT/MATH 395 alone will never be approved as an elective.) STAT/MATH 396 and STAT/MATH 491 require STAT/MATH 395 as a prerequisite.  Thus, only those particularly interested in “probability” should substitute STAT 340 with STAT/MATH 394/395.  So should Math majors and Math/Stat double majors.

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For Statistics major admission and graduation assistance, see Undergraduate Academic Counselor. B313A Padelford. The Statistics Undergraduate Adviser is Prof. Vladimir Minin C 315 Padelford.

Revised August 24 2015.