Statistics are an important facet of fields such as economics, engineering, education, biology, psychology, marketing and public health. Becoming a statistician means collecting and analyzing numerical data to generate information on a variety of subjects.
Most statistician jobs require a master’s degree. Faculty and research positions usually necessitate a doctorate degree. Those with a bachelor’s degree in statistics or a related subject such as biostatistics or mathematics should have a good foundation for further education in the field.
Statisticians use mathematical methods and concepts to draw practical conclusions from data. Their work is integral to important decisions in medicine, government and various industries.
Statisticians use several techniques to acquire information. One of the key methods statisticians use to obtain data is by sampling a smaller portion of the total population being examined and then using statistical concepts to make inferences about the entire population based on that sample.
Depending on their area of expertise, statisticians might be involved in one or more of the following responsibilities:
Government agencies employ a large percentage of statisticians to assist with research on population growth, unemployment, consumer prices and other significant societal factors.
The U.S. Department of Labor reported a mean annual wage of $72,150 for statisticians in 2007. The Federal Executive branch employed the most statisticians, while research/development and universities were the second and third highest employers of statisticians respectively.
Jobs for statisticians are expected to grow by nine percent through 2016 as opportunities for statisticians open up in a number of fields. The U.S. Department of Labor anticipates that master-level statisticians with backgrounds in biology, engineering, finance or computer science will have the most opportunities.