Chairperson: Rebecca L. Sanders, Ph.D.
Applied Statistics website


Master of Science, students are admitted under Plan B (non-thesis option) but may request Plan A (thesis option)


The master of science program in applied statistics produces graduates who can deal with big data, perform statistical analysis to detect hidden patterns in data, perform risk factor analysis and perform predictive analysis. Applications of statistics are found in many fields such as social sciences, engineering, business, biomedical sciences and economics. The master of science in applied statistics is intended for students who have a mathematical background (not necessarily having a degree in mathematics) that want to develop strong data analytic skills to solve complex, real world problems. This program meets the needs for recent graduates who are seeking a master’s degree program in applied statistics, and for mid-career workers with a solid mathematics and/or statistics background who are seeking a graduate program in applied statistics either for career advancement or for a career change. Students may select courses from a large number of approved courses offered by the Department of Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Science and other units on campus.

Students may pursue the degree on a full-time or part-time basis. Most courses are offered in the evenings.


Applicants must have completed or be in the process of completing a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university. Admission to the master of science program in applied statistics will be based on a sufficient formal mathematics and/or statistics background and a previous experience with programming. The applied statistics program can accommodate students from a wide variety of disciplines.


The master of science program in applied statistics follows the Graduate School deadlines for the submission of applications: August 1 for fall admission, December 15 for spring admission, and May 1 for summer admission. However, to be considered for financial aid, applications for fall must be submitted by January 15. Decisions about acceptance into the program are made when all required documents for the application are received. Admission decisions are made independently of decisions to offer financial aid.


Applicants must submit, directly to the Graduate School:

  1. A completed application form and fee online.
  2. Copies of all college/university transcripts except Marquette.*
  3. An essay outlining relevant work experience or education, career goals, possible areas of interest and reasons for seeking admission to this program.
  4. Three letters of reference from professors or professionals familiar with the applicant's abilities, academic work and/or professional background.
  5. (For students applying for merit-based financial aid only) GRE scores (General Test only).
  6. (For international applicants who have not attended an English-speaking university only) a TOEFL score or other acceptable proof of English proficiency. 

Upon admission, final official transcripts from all previously attended colleges/universities, with certified English translations if original language is not English, must be submitted to the Graduate School within the first five weeks of the term of admission or a hold preventing registration for future terms will be placed on the student’s record. 


Students interested in applying to the program should consult the program website for additional information, including a list of currently approved courses for the degree.
A complete list and short description of the courses offered by the Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Science Department (MSCS) is available on the MSCS Department page of the bulletin.

Master of Science in Applied Statistics

A master’s student is admitted to the non-thesis program (Plan B). A formal request to pursue a thesis (Plan A) must be approved by the department's applied statistics program director, the department’s Graduate Committee and the Graduate School.

Plan A

All Plan A students must complete a minimum of 30 credit hours (21 credits of program core courses, 3 elective credits and 6 credits of MSCS 6999 Master’s Thesis), and submit a thesis that must be an original contribution to the student's field of study. A public defense of the thesis is required.

Required Core courses (21 credits):
MSCS 5710Mathematical Statistics3
MSCS 5780Regression Analysis3
MSCS 6010Probability3
MSCS 6020Simulation3
MSCS 6040Applied Linear Algebra3
MSCS 6240Design of Experiments and Data Analysis3
MSCS 6250Advanced Multivariate Data Analytics3
Approved Elective course(s)3
Master's Thesis/Research:
MSCS 6999Master's Thesis6
Total Credit Hours30

Plan B

All Plan B students complete at least 33 credits (21 credits of program core courses, 9 credits of approved elective courses and a 3 credit statistical consulting practicum). A written report and an oral presentation are required for the statistical consulting practicum.

Required Core courses (21 credits):
MSCS 5710Mathematical Statistics3
MSCS 5780Regression Analysis3
MSCS 6010Probability3
MSCS 6020Simulation3
MSCS 6040Applied Linear Algebra3
MSCS 6240Design of Experiments and Data Analysis3
MSCS 6250Advanced Multivariate Data Analytics3
Approved Elective courses9
Professional Practice/Statistical Consulting:3
Total Credit Hours33

Plan A and Plan B master's students may select additional approved course work within MSCS or from outside departments. For a complete list of approved courses from departments outside of MSCS, consult with the applied statistics program director. The following are approved courses within MSCS:

BIIN 6000Introduction to Bioinformatics3
MSCS 5540Numerical Analysis3
MSCS 5610Data Mining3
MSCS 5630Mathematical Modeling and Analysis3
MSCS 5700Theory of Probability (Only if taken before MSCS 6010)3
MSCS 5760Time Series Analysis3
MSCS 6030Applied Mathematical Analysis3
MSCS 6050Elements of Software Development3
MSCS 6060Parallel and Distributed Systems3

For both Plan A and Plan B:

  • Depending on the course topic, MSCS 5931 Topics in Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Science or MSCS 6960 Seminar in Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Science may also be approved elective courses.
  • Up to 6 credit hours total of courses may be taken from the Medical College of Wisconsin and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, as allowed under the reciprocal arrangement between Marquette and these institutions as long as they are pre-approved by the applied statistics program director and the Graduate School.
  • Master's students who come with little background in statistics may be required to complete MSCS 5720 Statistical Methods during their first term or during the summer before their first fall term. This is in addition to the required course work for Plan A or Plan B.