Careers in Statistics



Statistical assistants
(O*NET 43-9111.00)

Compile and compute data according to statistical formulas for use in statistical studies. May perform actuarial computations and compile charts and graphs for use by actuaries. Includes actuarial clerks.

  • 2006 employment: 23,000
  • Projected 2006-16 employment change: About as fast as average
  • Most significant source of postsecondary education or training: Moderate-term on-the-job training



Significant Points


  • About 30 percent of statisticians work for Federal, State, and local governments; other employers include scientific research and development services and finance and insurance firms.
  • A master's degree in statistics or mathematics is the minimum educational requirement for most jobs as a statistician.
  • Employment of statisticians is projected to grow about as fast as average.
  • Individuals with a degree in statistics should have opportunities in a variety of fields.



Statisticians held about 22,000 jobs in 2006. About 20 percent of these jobs were in the Federal Government, where statisticians were concentrated in the Departments of Commerce, Agriculture, and Health and Human Services. Another 10 percent were found in State and local governments, including State colleges and universities. Most of the remaining jobs were in private industry, especially in scientific research and development services, insurance carriers, and pharmaceutical and medicine manufacturing.

Job prospects. Individuals with a degree in statistics should have opportunities in a variety of fields. For example, many jobs involve the analysis and interpretation of data from economics, biological science, psychology, computer software engineering, education, and other disciplines. Additional job openings will become available as statisticians transfer to other occupations, retire, or leave the workforce for other reasons.

Among graduates with a master's degree in statistics, those with a strong background in an allied field, such as finance, biology, engineering, or computer science, should have the best prospects of finding jobs related to their field of study.


Median annual wage-and-salary earnings of statisticians were $65,720 in May 2006. The middle 50 percent earned between $48,480 and $87,850. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $37,010, while the highest 10 percent earned more than $108,630.

The average annual salary for statisticians in the Federal Government was $85,690 in 2007, while mathematical statisticians averaged $96,121.


Martin Stensing
Assistant Professor of Mathematics; Coordinator of Mathematics