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How to become a statistician

statistician careers

What does a statistician do?

Statisticians gather and analyse numerical information or data and present the results in the form of graphs, charts, diagrams, tables and written or oral reports. They can manipulate their findings to identify trends and create models to forecast or estimate future outcomes.

Statisticians can work in a number of areas including the financial sector, health services, environmental sciences, forensics, and in education. They are employed by a range of organisations such as the NHS, government agencies, research councils, and universities.

Government statisticians collect, analyse and publish information on all aspects of national life such as population trends, the economy, the labour market, health, transport and crime. This information is used to advise government, parliament and the wider community.

In industry, statisticians have an important role in ensuring that mass-produced articles are of an acceptable quality. They may also predict demand and advise on production plans.

 

What's the working environment like for a statistician?

Statisticians' work 40 hours a week, and occasionally longer where project deadlines must be met.

The work is office-based but might involve travelling to other locations to obtain information.

 

What does it take to become a statistician?

To be a statistician, you should:

  • have a high level of mathematical ability
  • be computer literate
  • be able to analyse and interpret data
  • have strong problem-solving skills
  • have a methodical and logical approach to projects
  • be able to plan and complete work to meet deadlines
  • work accurately and with attention to detail
  • have good interpersonal skills to work as part of a team
  • have excellent written and oral communication skills.

A driving licence may be required for some posts.

To get started in this role you will usually need a degree in statistics, maths or a related subject. You could possibly gain entry with a degree in social sciences or informatics as long as formal training in statistics is included within the course. 

You may be required by some employers to have a postgraduate qualification and knowledge of statistical software such as Statistical Package for the Social Sciences. 

 

Statistician career opportunities

As you gain more experience there is the opportunity to move into management, academic research or work as a freelance consultant. 

Further information

If you would like to find out more about becoming a statistician that does not appear on Hotcourses, further information can be found below.

Government Statistical Service
Office for National Statistics
1 Drummond Gate
London
SW1V 2QQ
www.statistics.gov.uk/recruitment/gss

Royal Statistical Society
12 Errol Street
London
EC1Y 8LX
www.rss.org.uk
 

Courses to help you become a statistician