College: Arts and Sciences
Statistics is the science of decision making under uncertainty. By understanding statistics, you can make sound decisions based on data and models of the world.
The study of statistics encompasses study design and the collection, assessment and curation of data; the building of formal statistical models to capture an abstraction of reality; and the rules of probability upon which those models rest.
In Ohio State's statistics program, students will explore each of these areas in their course work. They will also develop statistical, computational and numerical skills that are applicable in fields including agriculture, business, education, science and engineering, finance, medicine, and the social sciences.
Upon admission to the university, students can declare a major in statistics within the College of Arts and Sciences. Students should then contact a statistics advisor to map out an appropriate program of courses.
Students interested in the statistics major should take Calculus I and II and Introduction to Computer Programming as prerequisites for the major. Students are also encouraged (but not required) to take Introduction to Statistical Reasoning or a general education data analysis course.
The requirements for the major are broken down into two components: core fundamentals and a selection of electives. All students take courses covering the fundamentals of statistics, including:
- Calculus III
- Linear Algebra
- Introduction to Probability for Data Analytics
- Introduction to Statistical Interference for Data Analytics
- Statistical Modeling for Discovery I
- Statistical Modeling for Discovery II
- Principles of Data Collection and Analysis
- Advanced Statistical Inference
- Computational Statistics
Student can then tailor the major to their unique interests by selecting at least 15 hours of elective course work.
Graduates of the statistics major will be well-suited for jobs requiring statistical analyses of data and the ability to provide theoretically grounded insights. Statisticians can work in a variety of fields, including pharmacy, finance, consumer science, medicine, environmental science, agriculture, business, education, engineering and the social sciences. Locally, Columbus companies such as Nationwide Insurance, JPMorgan Chase, Root Insurance, Upstart and Battelle Memorial Institute regularly employ Ohio State's statistician alumni.
Graduates will also be prepared for further study at the graduate level, which can lead to career opportunities in academia, government and other industries.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2019 the national median salary for statisticians was $91,160. This includes workers specializing in fields such as biostatistics, agricultural statistics, business statistics and economic statistics.
Upon completion of the statistics program, students will:
- be proficient at exploratory data analysis using graphical and computational tools;
- understand mathematical concepts relevant to statistical theory, and will be adept at applying these concepts to statistical models for data, such as those arising in business and the physical, biological and social sciences;
- be able to assess whether hypotheses are supported by data and to quantify uncertainty in parameter estimates and models;
- be able to develop, fit, assess and compare statistical models in a formal probabilistic framework;
- be able to communicate the results of a statistical analysis (in both oral and written formats) in a manner appropriate to the audience.