May 27, 2024  
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog 
2023-2024 Graduate Catalog

Master of Science in Statistics

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At the time of admission each student is expected to have completed a standard three-course sequence in calculus and a course in elementary linear algebra. Courses equivalent to CSCI 230 and one from STAT 400 and STAT 435, must also have been completed. Any deficiencies should be removed at the beginning of the student’s program.

Check departmental information for additional requirements.

The student learning outcomes for this degree are located at


Complete at least 33 semester hours of graduate work, with at least 21 semester hours completed in STAT courses numbered 600 and above. At most, six semester hours can be courses offered outside of the Department of Statistics and Actuarial Science. These courses might only be taken with prior permission of the student’s advisor.

Follow a program of study approved by the Department of Statistics and Actuarial Science.

Write a master’s thesis or pass a comprehensive examination based upon student’s plan of study. Usually, a student pursuing full-time graduate study will be required to write a master’s thesis or take the comprehensive examination within two academic years of admission to the Graduate School. A student who fails the examination may, with the permission of the department, repeat it once.

Thesis Option

The thesis option is usually recommended by the department. Each student pursuing this option must enroll in STAT 699, Master’s Thesis, for at least two semesters, and submit a written thesis. Up to three semester hours credit in STAT 699 may be applied toward the degree. The student’s thesis advisor serves as chair of the graduate committee that administers a defense of the thesis.

Non-Thesis Option

The non-thesis option is primarily for students who intend to pursue doctoral work in the mathematical sciences at NIU. With departmental consent, the student must complete a 33-semester hour program of courses approved by the department and pass a written comprehensive examination.

Course Requirements

With the consent of the department, a student may include STAT 699, Master’s Thesis, for 3 semester hours of credit, in the 33 semester hours required for a master’s degree.


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