Interested in Studying Statistics at BU?

From: Prof. Uri Eden, Director, Program in Statistics

Dear Prospective Applicant,

Thank you for your interest in graduate studies in statistics and probability at Boston University.

Through the Department of Mathematics and Statistics, we offer the opportunity to pursue graduate studies at both masters and doctoral levels. Furthermore, at the masters level, we offer both MS and MA degrees.

Part of a Group I department (the highest level nationally) in the ranking of the National Research Council, our Probability and Statistics group is a highly interdisciplinary research group with international visibility, working on theory and methods in statistics and probability linked to a variety of other areas, including bioinformatics, computer science, dynamical systems, geosciences, mathematical finance, medicine, neuroscience, and social science.

Faculty members in our group have won prestigious fellowships, such as Guggenheim and NSF Career awards, are fellows of various societies, and have received coveted university teaching awards.

Our graduates place well in both academia and industry.  For example, recent students have obtained offers of postdoctoral positions at places like Carnegie Mellon, Harvard, MIT, and the National Institute of Statistical Sciences.  In addition, we have had students take faculty positions in the US at places like the University of Michigan, the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, Rhodes College, the University of Central Florida, and Worcester Polytechnic Institute, as well as abroad, such as at East China Normal University.  Similary, others are now pursuing successful careers in pharmaceuticals, like Johnson & Johnson or Novartis, and financial firms like State Street and Wellington Management.

To apply to study statistics or probability with us, you submit an application to the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. Please be sure to indicate on the application that (i) you are applying to the Department of Mathematics and Statistics, and (ii) that you wish to specialize in statistics/probability.  Please note that almost all of our students begin their program of study in the Fall semester and almost all of the available financial aid is earmarked for applicants to the Department’s PhD program.

Also, importantly, please note that all of your application materials must be submitted directly to the Graduate School, not to our department.

The Department of Mathematics and Statistics offers a number of fellowships for new PhD students. These include the Presidential University Graduate Fellowship funded by the President of the University, the Dean’s Fellowship funded by the Dean of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, and GAANN Fellowships funded by a grant from the US Department of Education’s Program called Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need. Teaching Fellowships are also awarded to new PhD students. The duties include leading discussion sections for a large lecture class, holding office hours, grading, and some tutoring. Finally, Research Assistantships on grants are available as well, with many of our PhD students supported in this manner after their first year.

Each position funded by a fellowship, grant, or teaching fellowship includes tuition and fees (the number of courses varies depending on duties), as well as a stipend for the 9-month academic year. Moreover, in most cases, our commitment of financial support is for at least five years of graduate study, subject to your making satisfactory progress toward your degree. Also, many of our students receive two or three months of summer support funded via grants and teaching opportunities, or externally via short-term memberships in national institutes, such as the Math Science Research Institute in Berkeley, California.  In addition, our students have been successful in finding summer internships, with recent students spending time at places like AT&T Labs, Pfizer, the Royal Bank of Canada, and Hartford.

A great deal of additional information on admissions generally at Boston University may be found at the website of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.  I encourage you to visit this site. If you have further questions about studying statistics in our department, please contact, Sean Grogg (, the Graduate Program Administrator.  For more general question about our department’s graduate program as a whole (which allows for study in a variety of areas in mathematics), please contact the department directly,


Prof. Uri Eden
Director, Program in Statistics
Department of Mathematics and Statistics
Boston University