Doctor of Philosophy
The Department of Statistics offers programs leading to a Ph.D. in statistics. The program is flexible enough to be individually planned around prior experience and in accord with professional goals.
During the first year of the program, students are strongly encouraged to meet with each individual faculty member to discuss possible research topics. The student should select an advisory and examining committee by the end of the first year.
Ph.D. Program in Statistics:
To be admitted with full status into the Ph.D. program, the applicant must:
- Hold a baccalaureate degree from an educational institution of recognized standing.
- Have had four courses in Math at the university calculus level or above.
- Have had several courses in statistics.
- Have had at least one programming language.
Must have at least a 3.0 or equivalent cumulative grade point average (GPA) on all related courses at the baccalaureate level.
Students not holding a master's degree in statistics or a closely related field will not be admitted to the Ph.D. program in statistics. These students must first apply to the M.S. program in applied statistics and complete the M.S. degree.
Preferably, applications should be submitted to the Graduate School before March 15 of the upcoming academic year.
Official transcripts (transcripts having an appropriate seal or stamp) of all previous undergraduate and graduate records must be received by the Graduate School before the application is complete. When a transcript is submitted in advance of completion of undergraduate or graduate studies, an updated transcript showing all course credits and grades must be provided prior to initial registration at NDSU.
Three letters of recommendation are generally required before action is taken on any application.
The TOEFL examination is required of international applicants.
The student must first apply in our program through the Graduate School and be accepted in full or conditional status before he/she is eligible for an assistantship in the Department of Statistics.
Teaching assistantships are available. To be considered for an assistantship, a completed Graduate School application, official transcripts, and three letters of reference must be submitted to the Graduate School no later than March 15. International students must also submit a TOEFL score.
The program for the Ph.D. degree requires an additional 30 credits of course work and 30 hours in research beyond the M.S. degree. An oral defense of a dissertation is required.
Requirements for the Ph.D. degree in Statistics*
All students must:
- Complete a set of core courses with a grade of B or better including: STAT 661, 662, 767, 768, and 764 or 774. Most of these courses will be completed during your M.S. degree.
- Complete an additional 30 semester credits of statistics courses at the 600- or 800-level (does not include STAT 725 or 726). At least 15 credits must be at the 700- to 800- level.
- Students must take STAT 786, 764, and 774 if not taken at the M.S. level.
- Upon approval by the adviser and advisory committee, up to 9 hours may be taken in Mathematics or Computer Science. It is recommended that a student have knowledge of real analysis at some level such as MATH 650 and MATH 651.
- Pass a written comprehensive exam. This exam consists of two sections. Exam 1 covers STAT 767 and STAT 768. Exam 2 covers STAT 661, STAT 662 and STAT 764 or STAT 774. Exam 1 is two hours and Exam 2 is three hours. These exams are offered during approximately the fifth week of each semester (fall and spring). A maximum of two attempts is allowed.
- A plan of study must be submitted and approved prior to your oral examination.
- Submit a research proposal and pass an oral exam on the proposal and related topics at least one semester prior to defending your dissertation.
- Complete and successfully defend the research dissertation.
*Some of these requirements may be satisfied upon admittance into the program with an already existing M.S. degree in Statistics.