Brigham Young University Homepage

Undergraduate Catalog

2013 - 2014


H. Dennis Tolley, Chair
223 TMCB, (801) 422-4505

College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences Advisement Center
N-181 ESC, (801) 422-2674

Admission to Degree Program

All degree programs in the Department of Statistics are open enrollment.

The Discipline

Statisticians help determine the sampling and data collection methods, monitor the execution of the study and the processing of data, and advise on the strengths and limitations of the results. They must understand the nature of uncertainties and be able to draw conclusions in the context of particular statistical applications.

An actuary is a business professional who analyzes the financial consequences of risk. Actuaries use statistics, mathematics, and financial theory to study uncertain future events, especially those of concern to insurance and pension programs. They evaluate the likelihood of those events, design creative ways to reduce the likelihood and decrease the impact of adverse events that actually do occur. Their work requires a combination of strong analytical skills, business knowledge and understanding of human behavior to design and manage programs that control risk.

Career Opportunities

The curriculum and degrees offered through the Department of Statistics are designed to equip students with decision-making skills for careers as professional statisticians in industrial organizations, government agencies, insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies, universities, and research institutes. The technical tools statisticians acquire are useful in many areas, and for this reason a statistics degree is also excellent preparation for professional programs in business administration, medicine, law, and public administration.

Graduation Requirements

To receive a BYU bachelor's degree a student must complete, in addition to all requirements for a specific major, the following university requirements:

  • The university core, consisting of requirements in general and religious education. (See University Core for details. For a complete listing of courses that meet university core requirements, see the current class schedule.)
  • At least 30 credit hours must be earned in residence on the BYU campus in Provo as an admitted day student
  • A minimum of 120 credit hours
  • A cumulative GPA of at least 2.0
  • Be in good standing with the Honor Code Office

Undergraduate Programs and Degrees

Students should see their college advisement center for help or information concerning the undergraduate programs.

Graduate Programs and Degrees

General Information

  1. It is recommended that a student complete the following courses in high school:
    • 3 units of English.
    • 1 unit of physical science, either chemistry or physics.
    • 4 units of mathematics, consisting of 2.5 units of algebra, 1 unit of geometry, and 0.5 unit of trigonometry. This should qualify students to begin college mathematics with Math 112, analytic geometry and calculus.
        Because mathematics provides the foundation for all work in the physical and mathematical sciences, particular attention is paid to high school preparation in this subject.

        To decide which mathematics course should be taken first, write to the Mathematics Department, 275 TMCB, and request a mathematics placement test.

  2. Students are encouraged to complete 15 credit hours each semester. Taking fewer credits substantially increases the cost and the number of semesters to graduate.
  3. An integrated BS/MS program is available. This program allows Statistics students in the Statistical Science and Biostatistics emphases to receive their bachelor's and master's degree in five years of schooling. It is available to students who have only 6 courses left until completion of the bachelor's degree. Interested students must complete a department application by February 1 for admission Fall semester.