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The programme, which has recently been updated, trains professional statisticians for posts in industry, government, research and teaching. It provides a suitable preparation for careers in other fields requiring a strong statistical background. Core modules give a thorough grounding in modern statistical methods and there is the opportunity to choose additional topics to study.
Statistical Data Science at Kent provides:
The School has a strong reputation for world-class research and a well-established system of support and training, with a high level of contact between staff and research students. Postgraduate students develop analytical, communication and research skills. Developing computational skills and applying them to mathematical problems forms a significant part of the postgraduate training in the School. We encourage all postgraduate statistics students to take part in statistics seminars and to help in tutorial classes.
The Statistics Group is forward-thinking, with varied research, and received high rankings in the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014 for research power and quality.
You are more than your grades
For 2022, in response to the challenges caused by Covid-19 we will consider applicants either holding or projected a 2:2. This response is part of our flexible approach to admissions whereby we consider each student and their personal circumstances. If you have any questions, please get in touch.
A minimum of 2.2, with a substantial amount of mathematics at university level.
All applicants are considered on an individual basis and additional qualifications, professional qualifications and relevant experience may also be taken into account when considering applications.
Please see our International Student website for entry requirements by country and other relevant information. Due to visa restrictions, students who require a student visa to study cannot study part-time unless undertaking a distance or blended-learning programme with no on-campus provision.
The University requires all non-native speakers of English to reach a minimum standard of proficiency in written and spoken English before beginning a postgraduate degree. Certain subjects require a higher level.
For detailed information see our English language requirements web pages.
Please note that if you are required to meet an English language condition, we offer a number of pre-sessional courses in English for Academic Purposes through Kent International Pathways.
Duration: 1 year full-time
You undertake a substantial project in statistics, supervised by an experienced researcher. Some projects are focused on the analysis of particular complex data sets while others are more concerned with generic methodology.
You gain experience of analysing real data problems through practical classes and exercises. The programme includes training in the computer language R.
The following modules are indicative of those offered on this programme. This list is based on the current curriculum and may change year to year in response to new curriculum developments and innovation. Most programmes will require you to study a combination of compulsory and optional modules. You may also have the option to take modules from other programmes so that you may customise your programme and explore other subject areas that interest you.
The module enables students to undertake an independent piece of work in a particular area of statistics, or statistical finance/financial econometrics and to write a coherent account of the material.
There is no specific syllabus for this module.
Linear model. Least squares. General linear model; simple and multiple regression, polynomial regression. Model selection, residuals, outliers, diagnostics. Analysis of variance. Generalised linear model.
Discrete data analysis. Review of Binomial, Poisson, negative binomial and multinomial distributions. Properties, estimation, hypothesis tests.
Contingency tables. Tests for independence. Measures of association. Logistic models.
Multidimensional tables. Log–linear models; fitting and model selection.
Introduction: Machine learning and data visualisation with R.
Classification and prediction: Generalised linear model (GLM), linear discrimination analysis (LDA), k-nearest neighbors (KNN). R-based worked examples.
Resampling methods: Cross-validation (CV) and bootstrap. R-based worked examples.
Regression tree-based methods: Classification and regression trees (CART), bagging, random forests and boosting. R-based worked examples.
Support vector machines (SVM): Support vector classifier, regression SVM. R-based worked examples.
Machine Learning in Action:
(a) Biomedical and health data analysis;
(b) Bond default data analysis;
(c) Insurance data analysis;
(d) Financial data analysis;
(e) Other big data analysis.
Bayes Theorem for density functions; Conjugate models; Predictive distribution; Bayes estimates; Sampling density functions; Gibbs and Metropolis-Hastings samplers; Winbugs/OpenBUGS; Bayesian hierarchical models; Bayesian model choice; Objective priors; Exchangeability; Choice of priors; Applications of hierarchical models.
This is a practical module to develop the skills required by a professional statistician (report writing, consultancy, presentation, wider appreciation of assumptions underlying methods, selection and application of analysis method, researching methods).
Software: R, SPSS and Excel (where appropriate/possible). Report writing in Word. PowerPoint for presentations.
• Presentation of data
• Report writing and presentation skills
• Hypothesis testing: formulating questions, converting to hypotheses, parametric and non-parametric methods and their assumptions, selection of appropriate method, application and reporting. Use of resources to explore and apply additional tests. Parametric and non-parametric tests include, but are not limited to, t-tests, likelihood ratio tests, chi-squared tests, Mann Whitney U-test, Wilcoxon signed rank test, McNemar's test.
• Linear and Generalised Linear Models: simple linear and multiple regression, ANOVA and ANCOVA, understanding the limitations of linear regression, generalised linear models, selecting the appropriate distribution for the data set, understanding the difference between fixed and random effects, fitting models with random effects, model selection.
• Consultancy skills: group work exercise(s)
In addition, for level 7 students:
• Advanced presentation of data, such as visualisation of data points on a map
• Further extensions to Linear and Generalised Linear Models, such as hierarchical generalised linear models
Multivariate normal distribution, Inference from multivariate normal samples, principal component analysis, mixture models, factor analysis, clustering methods, discrimination and classification, graphical models, the use of appropriate software.
Statistics methods contribute significantly to areas such as biology, ecology, sociology and economics. The real data collected does not always follow standard statistical models. This module looks at modern statistical models and methods that can be utilised for such data, making use of R programs to execute these methods.
Indicative module content: Motivating examples; model fitting through maximum likelihood for specific examples; function optimization methods; profile likelihood; score tests; Wald tests; confidence interval construction; latent variable models; EM algorithm; mixture models; simulation methods; importance sampling; kernel density estimation; Monte Carlo inference; bootstrap; permutation tests; R programs.
In addition, for level 7 students: advanced EM algorithm methods, advanced simulation methods, writing R programs for advanced methods and applications.
Assessment is through coursework involving: complex theoretical questions, analysis of real-world data using appropriate computing packages over a range of areas of application; written unseen examinations; dissertation.
This programme aims to:
You will gain knowledge and understanding of:
You develop intellectual skills in:
You gain subject-specific skills in:
You will gain the following transferable skills:
The 2022/23 UK fees for research courses have not yet been set by the UK Government.
For details of when and how to pay fees and charges, please see our Student Finance Guide.
For students continuing on this programme fees will increase year on year by no more than RPI + 3% in each academic year of study except where regulated.* If you are uncertain about your fee status please contact email@example.com.
The University will assess your fee status as part of the application process. If you are uncertain about your fee status you may wish to seek advice from UKCISA before applying.
Find out more about general additional costs that you may pay when studying at Kent.
Search our scholarships finder for possible funding opportunities. You may find it helpful to look at both:
In the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014, research by the School of Mathematics, Statistics and Actuarial Science was ranked 25th in the UK for research power and 100% or our research was judged to be of international quality.
An impressive 92% of our research-active staff submitted to the REF and the School’s environment was judged to be conducive to supporting the development of world-leading research.
There has been research in the area of statistical ecology at Kent for many years. We are part of the National Centre for Statistical Ecology (NCSE), which was established in 2005. For details of the work of the NCSE, see www.ncse.org.uk
The research conducted in this area at Kent is mainly on Bayesian variable selection, Bayesian model fitting, Bayesian nonparametric methods, Markov chain Monte Carlo with applications.
Research is focused on statistical modelling and inference in biology and genetics with applications in complex disease studies. Over the past few decades, large amounts of complex data have been produced by high through-put biotechnologies. The grand challenges offered to statisticians include developing scalable statistical methods for extracting useful information from the data, modelling biological systems with the data, and fostering innovation in global health research.
This theme encompasses both theory and applications. Theory is involved with supervised and unsupervised learning, matrix factorisation, modelling of high-dimensional time series, differential privacy, deep learning and networks, shape analysis and statistics on manifolds, and neuroimaging. Applications in biology, industry, medicine and psychiatry. Often new computational methods are the key to analysing complex big data problems.
In order to describe the data, it is common in statistics to assume a specific probability model. Unfortunately, in many practical applications (for instance in economics, population genetics and social networks) it is not possible to identify a specific structure for the data. Nonparametric methods provide statistical tools for addressing inference in these situations.
At Kent there is particular interest in the use of nonparametric methods including quantile regression and Bayesian nonparametric approaches. Application areas include modelling of the business cycle and capacity utilisation, calculating sovereign credit ratings, modelling of stock return data, and predicting inflation.
Full details of staff research interests can be found on the School's website.
Students often go into careers as professional statisticians in industry, government, research and teaching but our programmes also prepare you for careers in other fields requiring a strong statistical background. You have the opportunity to attend careers talks from professional statisticians working in industry and to attend networking meetings with employers.
Our graduates have started careers in diverse areas such as the pharmaceutical industry, financial services and sports betting.
The taught programmes in Statistics and Statistics with Finance provide exemption from the professional examinations of the Royal Statistical Society and qualification for Graduate Statistician status.
Kent’s Computing Service central facility runs Windows. Within the School, postgraduate students can use a range of UNIX servers and workstations. Packages available include R, SAS, MATLAB, SPSS and MINITAB.
Staff publish regularly and widely in journals, conference proceedings and books. Among others, they have recently contributed to: Annals of Statistics; Biometrics; Biometrika; Journal of Royal Society, Series B; Statistics and Computing. Details of recently published books can be found within our staff research interests.
All students registered for a taught Master's programme are eligible to apply for a place on our Global Skills Award Programme. The programme is designed to broaden your understanding of global issues and current affairs as well as to develop personal skills which will enhance your employability.
Learn more about the applications process or begin your application by clicking on a link below.
Once started, you can save and return to your application at any time.