Mathematician or Statistician
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Salary Range: $80,000 or more
Average Hourly: $ 42.4
Education: Master's degree
Number of Jobs: 47300
Jobs Added to 2029: 14400
Growth: Much faster than average
Go here to see salary and job data specific to the United Kingdom.
Top 2021 careers for getting a job.
What Mathematicians and Statisticians Do
Mathematicians and statisticians analyze data and apply mathematical and statistical techniques to help solve real-world problems in business, engineering, healthcare, or other fields.
Mathematicians and statisticians typically do the following:
- Develop new mathematical rules, theories, and concepts in areas such as algebra and geometry
- Decide what data are needed to answer specific questions or problems
- Apply mathematical theories and techniques to solve practical problems in business, engineering, the sciences, and other fields
- Design surveys, experiments, or opinion polls to collect data
- Develop mathematical or statistical models to analyze data
- Interpret data and report conclusions drawn from their analyses
- Use data analysis to support and improve business decisions
Mathematicians and statisticians apply theories and techniques, such as mathematical or statistical modeling, to solve practical problems. Typically, they work with individuals in other occupations to solve these problems. For example, they may work with postsecondary teachers in education institutions. They usually have a mix of teaching and research responsibilities. Some may conduct individual research or collaborate with other professors or mathematicians. Collaborators may work together at the same institution or from different locations.
Many mathematicians and statisticians work in the federal government and in private science and engineering research companies. They may work on teams with engineers, scientists, and other professionals.
Work Environment Details
Mathematicians held about 2,900 jobs in 2018. The largest employers of mathematicians were as follows:
|Colleges, universities, and professional schools; state, local, and private||19|
|Research and development in the physical, engineering, and life sciences||15|
|Management, scientific, and technical consulting services||5|
Statisticians held about 44,400 jobs in 2018. The largest employers of statisticians were as follows:
|Research and development in the physical, engineering, and life sciences||12%|
|Healthcare and social assistance||10|
|Insurance carriers and related activities||8|
|Colleges, universities, and professional schools; state, local, and private||7|
Mathematicians and statisticians typically work in offices. They also may work on teams with engineers, scientists, and other professionals.
Most mathematicians and statisticians work full time. Deadlines and last-minute requests for data or analysis may require overtime. In addition, these workers may travel to attend seminars and conferences.
Overall employment of mathematicians and statisticians is projected to grow 30 percent from 2018 to 2028, much faster than the average for all occupations. Businesses will need these workers to analyze the increasing volume of digital and electronic data.
How to Become a Mathematician or Statistician
Mathematicians and statisticians typically need at least a master’s degree in mathematics or statistics. However, some positions are available to those with a bachelor’s degree.
In private industry, mathematicians typically need an advanced degree, either a master’s degree or a doctorate. For jobs with the federal government, candidates need at least a bachelor’s degree in mathematics or significant coursework in mathematics.
Most colleges and universities offer a bachelor’s degree in mathematics. Courses usually include calculus, differential equations, and linear and abstract algebra. Many colleges and universities advise or require mathematics students to take courses in a related field, such as computer science, engineering, physics, or statistics. Because mathematicians often work with data analysis software, computer programming courses may be particularly beneficial for students.
Many universities offer master’s and doctoral degrees in theoretical or applied mathematics. Many students who get a doctoral degree work as professors of mathematics in a college or university.
Statisticians typically need a master’s degree but some entry-level positions may accept candidates with a bachelor’s degree.
Most statisticians have degrees in mathematics, economics, computer science, or another quantitative field. A degree in statistics typically includes courses in linear algebra, calculus, experimental design, survey methodology, probability, and statistical theory.
Many colleges and universities advise statistics students to take courses in a related field, such as computer science, engineering, or physics. These courses can help prepare students to work in a variety of industries. Coursework in engineering or physical science, for example, may be useful for mathematicians or statisticians working in manufacturing on quality or productivity improvement. A background in biology, chemistry, or health sciences is useful for work testing pharmaceutical or agricultural products.
Because mathematicians and statisticians often work with data analysis software, computer programming courses may be particularly beneficial for students.
Students who are interested in becoming mathematicians or statisticians should take as many math courses as possible in high school.
Analytical skills. Mathematicians and statisticians use mathematical techniques and models to analyze large amounts of data. They must determine the appropriate software packages and understand computer programming languages to design and develop new techniques and models. They must also be precise and accurate in their analysis.
Communication skills. Mathematicians and statisticians must interact with, and propose solutions to, people who may not have extensive knowledge of mathematics.
Math skills. Mathematicians and statisticians use statistics, calculus, and linear algebra to develop their models and analyses.
Problem-solving skills. Mathematicians and statisticians must devise new solutions to problems encountered by scientists or engineers.
United Kingdom Job Data
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Mathematicians and Statisticians,
on the Internet at https://www.bls.gov/ooh/math/mathematicians-and-statisticians.htm (visited ).