MS in Applied Statistics for Social Science Research


The amount of data collected grows each year in quantity and complexity. Skilled professionals, able to analyze and interpret that data to facilitate and inform effective decision-making, are in great demand.

The core knowledge a data analyst is applied statistical methods – such as inference, measurement, multivariate and multilevel analysis, causal inference, sampling strategies, missing data.

The analyst is often an adept statistical programmer as well, customizing existing approaches to solve a particular problem.

Roles and Responsibilities

The most common role for a graduate with these skills is as an applied statistician, data analyst, or data scientist.

As a data analyst or scientist, you will:

  • Help shape the design of a research project or study
  • Play an important role in implementing the study or survey
  • Be responsible for collecting, organizing, and analyzing the data from various primary and/or secondary resources, such as surveys conducted as part of the study itself or from existing large public or private data sets
  • Help develop guidelines or protocols for collecting the data and extrapolating findings from the data
  • Work with sophisticated data management and statistical software to undertake your analyses and write reports on your findings
  • Explain past behavior, identify likely outcomes and scenarios, explore future trends, and make projections
Job Settings

Graduates of A3SR can expect to find opportunities working at any number of organizations that rely on quantitative data analysis.

Examples include:

  • Non-profit organizations
  • Educational and government agencies
  • Health organizations or agencies, such as city or state departments of health or medical research centers
  • Public policy research institutes
  • Pharmaceutical companies
  • Evaluation research firms
  • Data-driven private firms (e.g., Google, Facebook, IBM, Microsoft).
  • Marketing firms
  • Financial service organizations

These organizations, companies, and agencies all need people with the tools one develops in this program to help them perform their research and analysis and to make data-based decisions about future actions or policies.

Advanced Graduate Study

Graduates of A3SR may pursue further advanced study or doctoral degrees in fields that rely on quantitative analysis such as:

  • Statistics, Biostatistics or Data Science
  • Political Science
  • Sociology
  • Economics
  • Psychology
  • Epidemiology or Medicine