Requirements for

The Ph.D Degree in Statistics

Oklahoma State University

1.      Admission to the Program
      It is necessary to have an undergraduate degree, not necessarily in mathematics or statistics, to begin a program of study toward the Ph.D. degree in statistics.  It is expected that some students will be admitted to the program who have either a bachelor's degree or a master's degree in some other field.  However, the student should have a mathematical background which, as a minimum, is equivalent to the mathematics courses: 
                              MATH 2144     Calculus I
                              MATH 2153     Calculus II

                              MATH 2163   Calculus III
                              MATH 3013     Linear Algebra
                              MATH 4013     Calculus of Several Variables
                              MATH 4023     Intro to Modern Analysis
Students admitted to the program with deficiencies will be required to remedy such deficiencies.
In addition to the above courses, each student is required to complete COMSC 1113 or to demonstrate competence in a procedure-oriented language such as FORTRAN.


2.      Credit Requirements

A total of 90 hours above the B.S. degree is required.  At least 12 hours but not more than 30 hours of STAT 6000 are to be included on the plan of study.

3.      Grade Requirements

Students who receive more than two grades of C or below will be dismissed from the program.  Students who receive a D in a course with a STAT prefix may be dismissed from the program.


4.      Required Courses* - A doctoral candidate must complete the following courses during his/her graduate career.





STAT 5123  Probability

MATH 5043  Advanced Calculus I

COMSC1113  Computer Science I or competence in a computer language

STAT 5223  Inference

MATH 5053  Advanced Calculus II


STAT 5013  Statistics for Experimenters I

MATH 5143  Real Analysis I


STAT 5023  Statistics for Experimenters II


STAT 5093  Statistical Computing


STAT 6113  Intermediate Probability Theory


STAT 6203  Large Sample Inference


STAT 5303  Experimental Design


STAT 5323  Linear Models I


STAT 5333  Linear Models II


STAT 5513  Multivariate Analysis


STAT 6001  Statistics Literature


STAT 6223  Advanced Statistical Inference


STAT 6910**  (3) Special Problems



Students are also required to complete two hours of STAT 6001 Statistics Literature.  These two hours MUST be obtained in two separate semesters (1 credit hour each).  All Ph.D. students are strongly encouraged to attend Statistics Literature (also known as "Journal Club") every semester.

*  Students are encouraged to enroll in STAT 5091 SAS Programming to gain experience with SAS.
**  This course is required of every doctoral student and is to consist of material relating to the student’s research interest.  The course will be taught by the dissertation advisor and may be used to prepare the dissertation proposal.  The prerequisite is permission of the instructor.

Outside Courses
One three-hour 4000 level or higher graduate course, excluding those with STAT or MATH prefixes, is required.  Outside courses taken for a Masters degree may count toward this requirement.  The following courses will NOT be allowed to count toward this outside course.

AGEC 5103 Mathematical Economics, BAE 5513 Experimental Engineering Analysis, ECON 4213 Econometric Methods, IEM 5003 Stochastic Processes, IEM 5133 Statistics and Research Methods, PSYC 5303 & 5313 Quantitative Methods in Psychology I & II, REMS 5013 Research Design and Methodology, REMS 5953 Elementary Statistical Methods in Education, REMS 6003 Analyses of Variance, REMS 6013 Multiple Regression Analysis in Behavioral Studies.  With consent of a student’s graduate committee, a 3000-level course approved for graduate credit may be used for an outside course.


5.      Timeline and Ph.D. exam process

Please see the document Ph.D. Process for details and a typical timeline.     


6.   Plan of Study
The plan of study is usually made with the help of the advisory committee prior to the re-enrollment date during the second full semester of enrollment.  The Ph.D. Preliminary Examination must be passed before the appointment of an advisory committee.  The selection of courses for an acceptable program is the responsibility of the student and the advisory committee. STAT 3013 Intermediate Statistical Analysis, STAT 4013 Statistical Methods I, STAT 4023 Statistical Methods II, STAT 4203 Mathematical Statistics I,  STAT 4213 Mathematical Statistics II, STAT 5013 Statistics for Experimenters I are not allowed on the plan of study.

7.   The Ph.D. Preliminary Exam
The examination consists of material from the courses STAT 5123 Probability, STAT 5223 Inference, STAT 5303 Experimental Design, and STAT 5323 Linear Models I.  Doctoral students are required to take the preliminary exam at the first opportunity after the completion of courses STAT 5123 Probability, STAT 5223 Inference, STAT 5303 Experimental Design, and STAT 5323 Linear Models I, or equivalent graduate level courses, as approved by the advisor.  Failure to take the exam at the first opportunity will result in a failure of the exam on the first attempt.  The examination may be taken at most twice.  Students will be evaluated based on the results of all subjects simultaneously.


8.. Qualifying Exam
This examination is required by the Graduate College and is to be administered by the student’s advisory committee.  It is to consist of a written and oral presentation of the thesis proposal as well as written and oral questions submitted to the student by his/her advisory committee.  The student must have passed the preliminary examination and must have secured the permission of his principal advisor.

9.    Defense

       Please see the Guide to Defense Presentations for information on the defense of the dissertation.     


Graduate College Requirements
All requirements listed in the Graduate Catalog must be satisfied.


For answers to questions about the degree program or application materials, please contact:

Dr. Melinda H. McCann     

Graduate Coordinator


Dept. of Statistics

301 Mathematical Sciences

Stillwater, OK  74078-1056