Though statistics is a broader term and includes many activities, in general, statistics involves the study of various methods of data collection, organization, and data interpretation (i.e. drawing a conclusion from the collected and organized data).
Here’s what I found to be the simplest definition of Statistics:
Source: Cambridge Advance Learners Dictionary
A statistician can use the collected and organized data to forecast climate, to know about consumer tastes and preferences, to create better content for a website, to test software, to conserve endangered species, and a lot more depending upon his area of specialization and his work profile.
Sure, statistics is among the less popular and less explored fields of higher studies; students usually see it as a subject that is dry and dull. However, experts see it as one of the most fascinating and flourishing careers.
I keep saying that the sexy job in the next 10 years will be statisticians. And I’m not kidding.’ said Hal Varian, Google’s chief economist, in one of his interviews to The New York Times in 2009.
So, if you have been a good Mathematics student and you have a love for numbers, having a career as a statistician is certainly a thought worth considering.
The good part is, statisticians are needed all over the world; also, this is one of the professions where demand exceeds the supply, so if you are a good candidate, you will have a rewarding career.
If after 12th, you wish to pursue a career in Statistics, you can go for either B.Sc. Statistics or B.Sc. (Hons.) Statistics. Though if you want to specialize in any particular area B.Sc. (Hons.) would provide you an edge.
To be eligible for the admission, you should have passed 10+2 (Science stream) from any recognized board. The minimum percentage requirement varies from college to college.
The main subjects that you will study as a part of the course are:
- Descriptive Statistics
- Linear Algebra
- Probability Theory
- Numerical Methods
- Indian Statistical Systems, Economic Statistics & Time Series Analysis
- Population Statistics & Statistical Quality Control
- Mathematical & Computer Programming
- Analysis of Variance & Design of Experiments
- Statistical Inference II & Large Sample Theory
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The field of statistics is enormously wide. With a degree in Statistics, you can make a career in nearly any field from public service to an environment, and from medicine to sports, statisticians are needed everywhere.
With a degree in statistics, you will find ample of promising job opportunities in both private and public sectors.
The major fields for making a career in statistics are:
However, this is not all, as I said earlier Statisticians are needed in almost every field that you can imagine.
Big technology companies like Apple, Google, Oracle, Infosys, and IBM are constantly looking for professionals in the field of Statistics to help these giants thrive rapidly in this era of development.
Let’s hear what Linkedin’s principal Data Scientist, Deepak Kumar has to say about Statistics:
Though a bachelor’s degree is enough to help you grab a job, if you wish to study further you are available with varied options, some of them are:
- M.Sc Actuarial Science
- M.Sc. in Library and Information Science
- M.Sc. in Quantitative Economics
- Masters in Math
- Masters in Statistics
- P.G. Diploma in Stat. Methods with Applications
- Specialist Development Program in SQC
- JRF & SRF Rules
Candidates can also get enrolled with the Institute of Actuaries of India. An Actuary is a person who studies the mathematics and science of insurance. For this, you will be required to appear in ACET (Acturial Common Entrance Test). Though the minimum eligibility requirement for this course is 10+2, often candidates consider this course after a bachelor’s degree.
Further, after post graduation, candidates can also pursue Ph.D. or M.Phil., if they are interested in research. Research graduate students are especially desired by statistics companies e.g. Mu Sigma, Fractal Analytics, EXL and others. However, many companies would need you to have done a Experts in the topic as well. You would have a unique benefit over most technicians whom statistics companies discover available, as they will not be as well qualified with mathematical designs and methods.
Top Colleges for Statistics
Once, you have decided that you wish to make a career in Statistics, make sure you apply to the following colleges. The colleges mentioned below are considered the best for B.Sc. (Hons.) Statistics/B.Sc. Statistics:
- Hindu College, University of Delhi
- St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata
- Sri Venkateswara College, University of Delhi
- School of Basic and Applied Sciences, RNB Global University
- Ram Lal Anand College, University of Delhi
- Ramjas College, University of Delhi
- Lady Shriram College for Women, University of Delhi
- Madras Christian College, Chennai
- Mount Carmel College, Bangalore
- Wilson College, Mumbai
Contrary to the general notion, a Statistician’s career is not boring and dull but interesting, promising and engrossing. Statisticians contribute to the world in many ways; they study climate, human rights, education, sports, etc. and draw valuable conclusions to bring out amazing results.
However, becoming a successful statistician is not a child’s play, you will need to put in rigorous efforts and have or grow a love for your subject. Like any other job it also entails a lot of physical and mental toil. Though, as not much people know about this interesting career option, you will not face the cut-throat competition like in medicine, engineering, law, etc., but to have a growing career you will need to be really good.
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