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Ph.D. Programs

We are an excellent choice for bright minds seeking an outstanding statistics doctoral education.


Ph.D. in Statistics
Our core Ph.D. program focuses on providing students with comprehensive and rigorous training in cutting-edge statistical theory, methodology and applications, state-of-the-art computing skills and ability for conducting high-quality interdisciplinary research. Our Ph.D. graduates typically take positions in academia, government, financial services, and pharmaceutical and IT industries.

Ph.D. Co-major
A student pursuing the Ph.D. co-major program must satisfy the requirements of both departments. In the past, co-major degrees at the Ph.D. level were awarded jointly with biomathematics, crop science, economics and operations research. The dissertation must embody the results of original research of a standard that would warrant publication in a research journal from one or both of the two fields. A statistics Ph.D. co-major committee must have at least two statistics faculty (faculty with at least a 25 percent appointment in statistics), including the chair or one of the co-chairs.


Students currently enrolled in a graduate program at NC State may request a statistics minor, unless the program is an option B program. Please consult the university’s Graduate Administrative Handbook for rules about obtaining a minor.

Learn more about minors.

Program Prerequisites

Students are expected to have a good foundation in the material covered in the core courses (ST 701, 702, 703, 704 and 705), even if their master’s degree was received at another institution. Some students with previous master’s degrees find it useful to take these courses at NC State. However, this tends to lengthen the time to degree. Students are also expected to have had a course comparable to MA 425 (Mathematical Analysis I).

Required Coursework

Students that join our doctoral program with a Master of Statistics from another university are required to have a minimum of 54 credit hours in their doctoral Plan of Work (POW). Students who receive their master’s degree from NC State must have a minimum of 72 credit hours on the master’s and Ph.D. POWs combined. The POW may include research credit hours (ST 895); however, students are required to take 24 hours of coursework consisting of core courses, a consulting course, and electives as detailed below.

  • ST 779: Advanced Probability
  • ST 793: Advanced Statistical Inference
  • ST 758: Computation for Statistical Research
  • ST 841: Statistical consulting (unless student has taken ST 542 in our department)
  • Ethics sequence: Ethics in Statistics (currently offered as ST810-004) and PHI 816 Research Ethics. These partial-semester courses are designed to be taken together.


Nine hours of statistics Ph.D. electives are required from the following list:

  • ST 732: Longitudinal Data Analysis
  • ST 733: Spatial Statistics
  • ST 740: Bayesian Inference and Analysis
  • ST 746: Stochastic Processes
  • ST 790: Advanced Special Topics

Three hours of supporting electives are also required — a 500 or 700 level course in either statistics or another department with material relevant to the student’s plan of work. Examples include ST 520, ST 733, ST 744 and ST 745.

Other Information

Learn about Ph.D. graduate advisory committee requirements.

Learn about Ph.D. examination requirements.

See the Graduate School’s site for a list of required documents that must be received before graduation.

All questions regarding the graduate programs should be emailed to Graduate Services.