The Department of Statistics at the University of Chicago was established in 1949 to conduct research into advanced statistics and probability, to work with others in the application of statistics to investigations in the natural and social sciences, and to teach probability and statistical theory and practice on the undergraduate and graduate levels.
From its beginning, the Department has been recognized for the high quality of its faculty and the diversity of its interests. Some of the authors of the most important and influential texts and monographs in statistics and probability of the past 40 years have been affiliated with our Department. Current members of our faculty have written definitive works in a variety of areas of current research interest. These include Generalized Linear Models, an influential monograph that extends the scope of linear models greatly, including to models for discrete data, by Peter McCullagh and John Nelder; Elements of Statistical Computing: Numerical Computation, a far-ranging text on numerical methods for statistics by Ronald A. Thisted; and The History of Statistics: The Measurement of Uncertainty Before 1900 and Statistics on the Table, which are accounts by Stephen M. Stigler of the historical development of the field of mathematical statistics.
The Department offers two tracks of graduate study, one leading to the Master of Science degree, the other to the Doctorate of Philosophy. The MS degree is a professional degree—students who receive this degree are prepared for nonacademic careers in which the use of advanced statistical methods is of central importance but are also prepared for further graduate study. The PhD program prepares students for independent statistical research in academic, industrial, or public policy settings. Students in both programs are expected to acquire a common core of basic knowledge in statistical theory and applied statistical methodology, but students may tailor their programs to specialized areas of application, including statistical genetics, bio-informatics, systems biology, neuroscience, environmental statistics, computer vision, speech recognition, machine learning, economics and finance. Students may also specialize in probability theory and stochastic processes.
Since 1913, the University of Chicago has been continuously accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association.