The MA (Hons) in Statistics allows you to specialise in the branch of mathematics that focuses on collecting, analysing and presenting large quantities of numerical data. There are many practical applications for statistics, including fields such as science and medicine, government, business and education.
Students of Statistics will acquire the analytical techniques, clear logical thinking and deductive reasoning necessary to explore some of these fascinating areas of research.
Statistics is studied up to Honours level in both the Faculty of Science (BSc) and the Faculty of Arts (MA). Students who have a background in the Arts or who wish to study Statistics alongside Arts subjects at St Andrews should apply for the MA. For those interested in studying Statistics alongside Science subjects, the BSc in Statistics may be of interest instead.
More information for 2020 entry will be available in September 2019. For information on the current year of entry for this course see the 2019 page.
These grades are the overall standards required to consider you for entry. Find out more about Standard, Minimum and Gateway entry requirements using academic entry explained and see which entry requirements you need to look at using the entry requirements indicator.
Standard entry grades: AAAAB, including A in Mathematics
Minimum entry grades: AABB, including A in Mathematics
Standard entry grades: A*A*A, including A* in Mathematics
Minimum entry grades: A*AB, including A* in Mathematics
Standard entry grades: 38 (HL 6,6,6), including HL6 in Mathematics
Minimum entry grades: 36 (HL 6,5,5), including HL6 in Mathematics
We accept a wide range of qualifications for entry on to our programmes, please see our entry requirements for more information.
For degrees combining more than one subject, the subject with the higher entry requirements determines the grades you need. You will also need to meet any further subject specific entrance requirements as outlined on their pages.
If English is not your first language, you will need an overall IELTS score of 7.0, with a minimum score of 6.5 in each component (Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking), or an equivalent English Language qualification.
Yes, applicants are expected to have studied Mathematics at SQA Higher, GCE A-Level, or equivalent.
Faculty entry requirements
You must also meet the Faculty of Arts minimum qualifications. These vary depending on which qualifications you hold.
SQA National 5 (B) or equivalent in English and one SQA National 5 (B) from the following:
Computing Science or equivalent
Lifeskills Mathematics (A grade)
GCSE (B or 5) in English, English Language or English Literature, and one GCSE (B or 5) from the following:
Computing Science or equivalent
Passes in other examinations at equivalent levels and subjects may be accepted by the Dean of the Faculty. More information on how to apply via other entry routes or accreditation of prior learning and experience can be found on the University’s entry requirements web page.
The University publishes its expected timetables before the advising process, and aims to provide each student with a personalised timetable once module choices have been made and confirmed during matriculation.
The School of Mathematics and Statistics at the University of St Andrews is ranked as second in Scotland, with more than 91% of the research output by staff in the School rated as internationally excellent or world-leading in the recent Research Excellence Framework 2014.
The University of St Andrews as a whole was voted top in the UK for student academic experience in The National Student Survey 2018 as 94% of St Andrews final year students gave the University top marks for the quality of the learning and teaching experience.
The University has secured a TEF Gold Award for the quality of teaching and the undergraduate experience.
The demand for mathematically trained graduates exceeds the supply, and therefore the career prospects for graduates in Mathematics from St Andrews are excellent in a variety of fields. Clear logical thinking, deductive reasoning, confidence in data handling, and IT skills are attributes that are highly prized by employers.
Over 50% of Statistics graduates gain employment with:
the civil service
financial services organisations (for example, Goldman Sachs, KPMG, and PwC)
The Careers Centre offers one-to-one advice to all students as well as a programme of events to assist students to build their employability skills.
Statistics students may participate in the University-wide St Andrews Abroad programme. For information about study abroad options, please see the Study Abroad site.
From the outset, the University of St Andrews offers an array of events and opportunities which result in a truly unique student experience. Students participate in a range of traditions, notably, the red academic gown and the academic family, where older students adopt first year students as ‘children’ and help guide them in a system of mentoring. These traditions and the choice of over 150 sports clubs and student societies to choose from ensures a community feel amongst students from first year onwards.
Students of Statistics may be interested in joining the Mathematics Society (SUMS), a society dedicated to bringing people together who are interested in maths. They hold regular socials and informative talks from guest speakers.
The School of Mathematics and Statistics is currently split between two sites: the Mathematical Institute on the North Haugh and the Scott Lang Building at the Observatory. Most of the Statistics staff and research students can be found at the Observatory.
The town of St Andrews itself has lots to offer. As the campus is located around town, walking around you encounter ancient and modern buildings and areas of greenery and seaside which provide a rich, beautiful backdrop to learning. If you want a change of scenery, St Andrews' position near surrounding towns and cities such as Anstruther, Dundee and Edinburgh make it ideal for getting to know more about Scotland.
“Mathematics has a great community spirit with plenty of support systems in place for students to help each other like Maths Base and the buddy system. There are lots of options available in different areas of statistics, pure and applied maths.”
Anna (Lincolnshire, England)
School of Mathematics and Statistics University of St Andrews Mathematical Institute North Haugh St Andrews KY16 9SS
As a research intensive institution, the University ensures that its teaching references the research interests of its staff, which may change from time to time. As a result, programmes are regularly reviewed with the aim of enhancing students' learning experience. Our approach to course revision is described online. (PDF, 72 KB).