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Mathematical Statistics An MSc (CWRR) in Mathematical Statistics offers students who have excelled in their undergraduate and Honours studies an opportunity for advanced study in Mathematical Statistics. The course will help you build expertise in analytical approaches, and the classical and underpinning theory of mathematical statistics.
Mathematical Statistics An MSc (CWRR) in Mathematical Statistics offers students who have excelled in their undergraduate and Honours studies an opportunity for advanced study in Mathematical Statistics. The course will help you build expertise in analytical approaches, and the classical and underpinning theory of mathematical statistics.

Qualification: MSc

Faculty: Science

Duration: 1 - 2 years

School: Statistics and Actuarial Science

Study mode: Full-time; Part-time

Overview

The course prepares students who are keen to learn further statistical techniques to deal with data and undertake independent statistical research under the guidance of academic staff. It also offers students an opportunity to do a PhD in mathematical statistics on completion. Past students graduating from the MSc in Mathematical Statistics Programme have been highly successful in professional practice and a number have progressed to PhD studies in a number of statistics topics like Biostatistics, Reliability, Survival modelling, Statistical modelling, etc.

Why study MSc in Mathematical Statistics?

An MSc Mathematical Statistics should:

  • Prepare you for doing a PhD in Mathematical Statistics, Applied statistics, Statistical modelling, etc.
  • Help you build expertise in analytical approaches and the classical and underpinning theory of mathematical statistics
  • Offer options to focus on applied mathematical statistics if that is your interest and intended career path
  • Provide experience in conducting and communicating statistical investigations and the use of statistical software
  • Prepare you in conducting independent research

This Wits programme teaches you how to handle data, model data, discover patterns in data and make good decisions based on available data. It also gives you the theoretical and applied underpinnings of modern and classical statistical methods  

Why study Mathematical Statistics at Wits?

Wits is one of the top universities in South Africa. It has produced some of the best world-renowned academics. Some of the former lecturers in the school of Statistics and Actuarial science are:

  • John Edmund Kerrich, first head of the Statistics department. Famous for experiments in probability performed while interned (in Denmark) during the Second World War. He was one of the 12 founders of South African Statistical Association.
  • Herbert Sichel, He developed the Sichel-testimator for the lognormal distribution's t-statistic. He also made great leaps in the area of the generalized inverse Gaussian distribution which became known as the Sichel distribution.
  • Danie Gerhardus Krige was a South African statistician and mining engineer who pioneered the field of geostatistics. The technique of kriging is named after him. Krige's empirical work to evaluate mineral resources was formalised in the 1960s by French engineer Georges Matheron.
  • Gordon V. Kass, developed the Chi-square automatic interaction detection (CHAID) a decision tree technique, based on adjusted significance testing (Bonferroni testing).
  • Frank Beichelt a professor in the School whose research focuses on probability theory and mathematical statistics. He is the author books on stochastic modelling in reliability, maintenance, and safety analysis etc..
  • Paul Fatti - Emeritus Professor - University of the Witwatersrand, a former head of school and respected statistician. 
What does Wits have to offer?

Wits offers a variety of statistics courses which gives the student a good foundation to excel in a wide range of areas. The statistics staff are versatile, passionate and progressive in their teaching, supervision and research. The environment and culture is supportive and empowering, giving students the confidence to push their boundaries.

Graduates are prepared for a diverse range of careers including:

  • Statisticians
  • Data Scientists
  • Ecologists (environmental monitoring, water quality control, species management)
  • Image processing (computer vision, face detection, remote sensing)
  • Biostatistician (designing and analysing clinical trials and epidemiological studies)
  • Financial analysts (designing investment strategies and managing risks in finance)
  • Market researchers (conducting surveys and experiments etc.)
  • Econometricians (investigating the economy at all levels from businesses)
  • Epidemiologist (examine patterns in health and sickness)
  • Operations research and optimization
  • Bio-informatician (study DNA data)
  • Programmer (statistical computing is a highly sought-after skill)
  • Psychometrician (educational measurement or psychological measurement)
  • Statistical physicist (use of statistical mechanics to study thermodynamics)
  • The MSc (CWRR) requires a student to complete courses totalling 90 credits, as well as a research report with 90 credits. Total credits 180.
  • A mark of at least 50% is required in order to obtain credit for a course.
  • The course duration is a minimum of one year for full-time students and two years for part-time students. 
  • Students are required to register for each of the courses selected.  Details of compulsory and elective courses are given at registration; courses can be amended within the first 2 weeks of the semester, without fee implications. 
  • All MSc (CWRR) students are expected to start working on their research report during the first year of registration and submit their research proposal in the first three months. They are charged supervision fee in both years of registration for part-time students and full-time students.
Course
NQF credits
Semester offered
MSc
COMPULSORY
Research Report: Mathematical Statistics*
90
1
STAT7012A
Data Mining Theory & Application *
30
1
STAT7038A
Short Courses
Advanced Sampling
15
2
STAT7030A
Extreme Value Theory
15
2
STAT7033A
Operations Research
15
1
STAT7035A
Point Processes#
15
2
STAT7036A
Reliability & Maintenance Theory
15
2
STAT7004A
Spatial Statistics
15
2
STAT7006A
Stochastic Processes with Applications in Finance
15
1
STAT7037A
Advanced Non-parametric Statistics#
15
1
STAT7003A 

* May be offered (please check with co-ordinator)

At least one of the courses marked with an * must be included in the curriculum. Note that not all courses will be on offer in a particular year, depending on the demand. # May not be offered.

By special permission, appropriate short courses may also be taken from other Mathematical Sciences Schools or from the School of Economic and Business Science, in the Faculty of Commerce, Law and Management.

Acceptance into the degree requires an applicant to hold an appropriate Bachelor’s degree with Honours in Mathematical Statistics (or an equivalent 4 year degree), with an appropriate degree make-up, including two years of mathematics and four years of mathematical statistics at undergraduate level (assessed at University of the Witwatersrand equivalence).

Entry requires at least an upper second (>65%), and a Research component contributing at least 25% of the degree (assessed at University of the Witwatersrand equivalence).

In addition to the above, MSc applicants are required to include a synopsis (3-5 pages) of their proposed research.

Contact course co-ordinator.

Programme CodeProgramme TitlePlan DescriptionSA Cutoff DateInternational Cutoff Date
SCA00 Master of Science (Coursework and Research Report) Interdisciplinary Global Change Studies 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SCA00 Master of Science (Coursework and Research Report) Resource Conservation Biology 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SDA00 Doctor of Philosophy Animal, Plant and Environmental Sciences 31/12/2022 31/12/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Animal, Plant and Environmental Sciences 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SRA00 Master of Science (Dissertation) Animal, Plant and Environmental Sciences 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SDA00 Doctor of Philosophy Chemistry 31/12/2022 31/12/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Chemistry 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SRA00 Master of Science (Dissertation) Chemistry 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SCA00 Master of Science (Coursework and Research Report) Computational and Applied Mathematics 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SCA00 Master of Science (Coursework and Research Report) Mathematical Sciences 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SCA00 Master of Science (Coursework and Research Report) Artificial Intelligence 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SCA00 Master of Science (Coursework and Research Report) Computer Science 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SCA00 Master of Science (Coursework and Research Report) Data Science 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SCA00 Master of Science (Coursework and Research Report) eScience 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SCA00 Master of Science (Coursework and Research Report) Robotics 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SDA00 Doctor of Philosophy Computational and Applied Mathematics 31/12/2022 31/12/2022
SDA00 Doctor of Philosophy Computer Science 31/12/2022 31/12/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Big Data Analytics 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Computational and Applied Mathematics 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Computer Science 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Mathematical Sciences 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SRA00 Master of Science (Dissertation) Computational and Applied Mathematics 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SRA00 Master of Science (Dissertation) Computer Science 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SCA00 Master of Science (Coursework and Research Report) Archaeological Heritage Management 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SCA00 Master of Science (Coursework and Research Report) Geographical Information Systems and Remote Sensing 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SDA00 Doctor of Philosophy Geography, Archaeology and Environmental Studies 31/12/2022 31/12/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Archaeology 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Geography 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Geography, Archaeology and Environmental Studies 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SRA00 Master of Science (Dissertation) Archaeology 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SRA00 Master of Science (Dissertation) Geography, Archaeology and Environmental Studies 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SCA00 Master of Science (Coursework and Research Report) Economic Geology 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SCA00 Master of Science (Coursework and Research Report) Hydrogeology 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SDA00 Doctor of Philosophy Geology, Palaentology and Geophysics 31/12/2022 31/12/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Geochemistry 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Geology 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Geophysics 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Palaeontology 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Palaeontology and Geology 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SRA00 Master of Science (Dissertation) Geology 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SRA00 Master of Science (Dissertation) Geophysics 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SRA00 Master of Science (Dissertation) Palaeontology 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SDA00 Doctor of Philosophy Mathematics 31/12/2022 31/12/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Mathematics 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SRA00 Master of Science (Dissertation) Mathematics 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SDA00 Doctor of Philosophy Molecular and Cell Biology 31/12/2022 31/12/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Applied Bioinformatics 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Biochemistry and Cell Biology 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Genetics and Developmental Biology 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Microbiology and Biotechnology 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SRA00 Master of Science (Dissertation) Molecular and Cell Biology 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SCA00 Master of Science (Coursework and Research Report) Medical Physics 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SCA00 Master of Science (Coursework and Research Report) Radiation Protection 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SDA00 Doctor of Philosophy Physics 31/12/2022 31/12/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Physics 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SRA00 Master of Science (Dissertation) Physics 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SCA00 Master of Science (Coursework and Research Report) Mathematical Statistics 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SDA00 Doctor of Philosophy Statistics and Actuarial Science 31/12/2022 31/12/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Actuarial Science 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SHA00 Bachelor of Science Honours Mathematical Statistics 30/11/2022 30/11/2022
SRA00 Master of Science (Dissertation) Actuarial Science 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
SRA00 Master of Science (Dissertation) Statistics 31/12/2022 30/11/2022
  • Applications are handled centrally by the Student Enrolment Centre (SEnC). Once your application is complete in terms of requested documentation, your application will be referred to the relevant School for assessment. Click here to see an overview of the Wits applications process.
  • Please apply online. Upload your supporting documents at the time of application, or via the Self Service Portal.
  • Applicants can monitor the progress of their applications via the Self Service Portal.
  • Selections for programmes that have a limited intake but attract a large number of applications may only finalise the application at the end of the application cycle.

Please note that the Entry Requirements are a guide. Meeting these requirements does not guarantee a place. Final selection is made subject to the availability of places, academic results and other entry requirements where applicable.

International students, please check this section.

For more information, contact the Student Call Centre +27 (0)11 717 1888, or log a query at www.wits.ac.za/askwits.

Click here to see the current average tuition fees. The Fees site also provides information about the payment of fees and closing dates for fees payments. Once you have applied you will be able to access the fees estimator on the student self-service portal.

For information about postgraduate funding opportunities, including the postgraduate merit award, click here. Please also check your School website for bursary opportunities. NRF bursaries: The National Research Foundation (NRF) offers a wide range of opportunities in terms of bursaries and fellowships to students pursuing postgraduate studies. External bursaries portal: The Bursaries South Africa website provides a comprehensive list of bursaries in South Africa.