This is a named option in the Statistics M.S. The Statistics department recognizes that many students wish to have significant training within statistics, but apply their knowledge paired with a domain field in which they will utilize their statistical knowledge. This option within the MS Statistics provides the opportunity to do this. It is expected that many students will wish to pursue this program as a double, dual, or joint MS degree or also pursue a PhD in their domain field.

The Applied Statistics option is distinct from the other M.S. statistics options in its interdisciplinary emphasis with domain specific electives and research/project and its corresponding reduced depth in statistics. Students interested in training with statistical consulting as the primary focus should apply for the MS Statistics: Statistics.

Please consult the table below for key information about this degree program’s admissions requirements. The program may have more detailed admissions requirements, which can be found below the table or on the program’s website.

Graduate admissions is a two-step process between academic programs and the Graduate School. Applicants must meet the minimum requirements of the Graduate School as well as the program(s). Once you have researched the graduate program(s) you are interested in, apply online.

Fall Deadline January 2
Spring Deadline The program does not admit in the spring.
Summer Deadline The program does not admit in the summer.
GRE (Graduate Record Examinations) Not required.
English Proficiency Test Every applicant whose native language is not English or whose undergraduate instruction was not in English must provide an English proficiency test score and meet the Graduate School minimum requirements (
Other Test(s) (e.g., GMAT, MCAT) n/a
Letters of Recommendation Required 3

Applicants to the MS Statistics: Applied Statistics program may fall in to two categories:

  1. Joint, double, or dual degree with another program on campus.  For students who fall in to this category they may apply either while they are applying to their domain program or once they are on campus.  It is strongly advised that students indicate their domain program in their statement of interest.  For applicants already on campus, please contact for information on how to apply.
  2. Stand-alone program students.  For students who fall in to this category, it is strongly advised to include information in your statement regarding your specific domain area, ideas for collaboration within the domain field, and address why this option versus the traditional MS Statistics: Statistics.

Applicants to the MS Statistics: Applied Statistics program should have completed the following courses equivalent to the UW-Madison courses listed below:

Undergraduate Calculus
MATH 221 Calculus and Analytic Geometry 15
MATH 222 Calculus and Analytic Geometry 24
MATH 234 Calculus--Functions of Several Variables4
Complete one sequence below
Option 1
Statistical Methods for Bioscience I
and Statistical Methods for Bioscience II
Option 2
Introduction to Statistical Methods
Introductory Applied Statistics for Engineers
Introductory Applied Statistics for the Life Sciences
R for Statistics I
Applied Regression Analysis
Option 3
Introduction to Statistical Methods in Political Science
and Multivariable Statistical Inference for Political Research
Option 4: or another similar introductory statistics sequence

Graduate School Resources

Resources to help you afford graduate study might include assistantships, fellowships, traineeships, and financial aid. Further funding information is available from the Graduate School. Be sure to check with your program for individual policies and restrictions related to funding.

Program Information

Students admitted to the MS Statistics: Applied Statistics option will have the opportunity to apply for teaching assistantships within the Statistics department.  Students applying to the program by the 2 January deadline will be considered for funding at the time of application.  Questions about funding opportunities within the Statistics department should be directed to the graduate program coordinator.

Minimum Graduate School Requirements

Review the Graduate School minimum academic progress and degree requirements, in addition to the program requirements listed below.

Named Option Requirements

Mode of Instruction

Face to Face Evening/Weekend Online Hybrid Accelerated
Yes No No No NO

Mode of Instruction Definitions

Accelerated: Accelerated programs are offered at a fast pace that condenses the time to completion. Students typically take enough credits aimed at completing the program in a year or two.

Evening/Weekend: ​Courses meet on the UW–Madison campus only in evenings and/or on weekends to accommodate typical business schedules.  Students have the advantages of face-to-face courses with the flexibility to keep work and other life commitments.

Face-to-Face: Courses typically meet during weekdays on the UW-Madison Campus.

Hybrid: These programs combine face-to-face and online learning formats.  Contact the program for more specific information.

Online: These programs are offered 100% online.  Some programs may require an on-campus orientation or residency experience, but the courses will be facilitated in an online format.

Curricular Requirements

Minimum Credit Requirement 30 credits
Minimum Residence Credit Requirement 16 credits
Minimum Graduate Coursework Requirement 15 credits (50% of 30) must be graduate-level coursework. Details can be found in the Graduate School's policy:
Overall Graduate GPA Requirement 3.00 GPA required.

This program follows the Graduate School's policy:
Other Grade Requirements n/a
Assessments and Examinations Candidates must complete a project with an emphasis on the integration of statistics and science. A final oral examination is also required upon completion of the coursework and project.
Language Requirements No language requirements.

Required Courses

Introductory Mathematical Statistics
Complete using one of the following sequences6
Introduction to Probability and Mathematical Statistics I
and Introduction to Probability and Mathematical Statistics II
Introduction to Theory and Methods of Mathematical Statistics I
and Introduction to Theory and Methods of Mathematical Statistics II
Mathematical Statistics I
and Introduction to Statistical Inference
Or equivalent one-year sequence
Domain Area Electives9
Statistics Graduate Electives: 1
Statistics courses numbered 600 or above6
Statistics courses numbered 500 or above3
Applied Experience:
STAT 678 Introduction to Statistical Consulting3
Research or Project (see details below)3
Total Credits30

Excluding STAT/​F&W ECOL/​HORT  571, STAT/​F&W ECOL/​HORT  572, STAT/​B M I  541, STAT 698, STAT 699, STAT 990 and any courses/sections reserved for MS Statistics: Data Science or Statistics-VISP students. Credits from suitable quantitative courses taught in other departments (e.g., mathematics) may be substituted.

Selecting Program Coursework

All students in the MS Statistics: Applied Statistics option will work directly with their Statistics advisor prior to initial enrollment and will need to work with their Statistics advisor, and their domain committee member/co-advisor to select appropriate coursework during their first year of enrollment. This will be done by completing the MSAS course plan form (which is found in the program handbook).  Students are strongly encouraged to have all coursework pre-approved and multiple options of courses, in the case of the domain electives, to ensure that they are able to complete appropriate courses approved by their committee.

Domain coursework that covers statistical methodology is limited to a maximum of 3 credits.  Independent study or internship credits cannot be included in domain coursework.  Students will need to have a central theme to their domain coursework that can be selected from multiple, related departments.  Here are some examples of themes and courses:

The course plan will be reviewed by the student services coordinator prior to the requesting of the MS warrant to ensure that the correct and approve courses have been completed.

Research or Project

Each student must complete a project that represents an original contribution to applied statistics as the goal of this named option is to train statisticians who will work in a collaborative research environment. Examples of such contributions may include the creation and evaluation of a useful experimental design, the development and/or comparison of statistical methods, or a novel analysis of some interesting data related to their domain area.  All students in the MS Statistics: Applied Statistics option will work directly with their Statistics advisor and domain committee member/co-advisor to identify an appropriate project.

The project results are to be presented in a manuscript with emphasis on the integration of statistics and science that is approved by the student's 3-member committee. This requirement will be formalized by enrolling in at least three
credits of "Research'' or "Directed Study" (for example, independent study or research courses numbered 699, 799, or 999 in Statistics or in another department). 

Graduate School Policies

The Graduate School’s Academic Policies and Procedures provide essential information regarding general university policies. Program authority to set degree policies beyond the minimum required by the Graduate School lies with the degree program faculty. Policies set by the academic degree program can be found below.

Named Option-Specific Policies

Prior Coursework

Graduate Work from Other Institutions

With program approval, students are allowed to count no more than 9 credits of graduate coursework from other institutions towards the graduate degree credit and graduate coursework (50%) requirements. Coursework earned five or more years prior to admission to the master’s degree is not allowed to satisfy requirements.

UW-Madison Undergraduate

No credits from a UW–Madison undergraduate degree are allowed to count toward the degree.

UW-Madison University Special

No credits earned while a UW–Madison University Special student are allowed to count toward the degree.


This program follows the Graduate School's Probation policy.

Advisor / Committee

Students are required to meet with their advisor near the beginning of each semester to discuss course selection and progress.  See the Graduate School's Advisor policy and Committees policy.

Credits Per Term Allowed

15 credits

Time Limits

If the student is enrolled in a concurrent Ph.D. degree, the student should make application for both the master's and Ph.D. degrees during the semester in which they defend. In other words, the Masters Statistics: Applied Statistics degree should be completed by the semester in which the concurrent Ph.D. degree is completed. It is expected that all enrolled students will complete the program within three years. 

Grievances and Appeals

These resources may be helpful in addressing your concerns:

Students should contact the department chair or program director with questions about grievances. They may also contact the L&S Academic Divisional Associate Deans, the L&S Associate Dean for Teaching and Learning Administration, or the L&S Director of Human Resources.



Graduate School Resources

Take advantage of the Graduate School's professional development resources to build skills, thrive academically, and launch your career. 

Program Resources

Students in the MS Statistics: Applied Statistics program are encouraged to participate in program specific professional development events and work directly, one-on-one, with advisors as well. Information about events and resources will be made available to currently enrolled students via email.


Cecile Ane, Professor
Brian Yandell, Professor
Jun Zhu, Professor


John Schuppel, Graduate Program Coordinator