A statistician is someone who works with theoretical or applied statistics
Statistics is the study of the collection, organization, analysis, and interpretation of data. It deals with all aspects of this, including the planning of data collection in terms of the design of surveys and experiments....

. The profession exists in both the private and public sector
Public sector
The public sector, sometimes referred to as the state sector, is a part of the state that deals with either the production, delivery and allocation of goods and services by and for the government or its citizens, whether national, regional or local/municipal.Examples of public sector activity range...

s. The core of that work is to measure, interpret, and describe the world and human activity patterns within it. The field shares much common history with positivist social science, but often with a greater emphasis on advanced mathematical methods.

It is common to combine statistical knowledge with expertise in other subjects. The applications are varied. Statisticians apply their knowledge to production, research, finance, medicine
Medicine is the science and art of healing. It encompasses a variety of health care practices evolved to maintain and restore health by the prevention and treatment of illness....

, the built
Built environment
The term built environment refers to the human-made surroundings that provide the setting for human activity, ranging in scale from personal shelter and buildings to neighborhoods and cities that can often include their supporting infrastructure, such as water supply or energy networks.The built...

 and natural environments
Natural environment
The natural environment encompasses all living and non-living things occurring naturally on Earth or some region thereof. It is an environment that encompasses the interaction of all living species....

, insurance
In law and economics, insurance is a form of risk management primarily used to hedge against the risk of a contingent, uncertain loss. Insurance is defined as the equitable transfer of the risk of a loss, from one entity to another, in exchange for payment. An insurer is a company selling the...

 and government
Government refers to the legislators, administrators, and arbitrators in the administrative bureaucracy who control a state at a given time, and to the system of government by which they are organized...

. They often are employed to support managerial decisions or to supervise quality control in manufacturing.

Nature of the work

According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics
Bureau of Labor Statistics
The Bureau of Labor Statistics is a unit of the United States Department of Labor. It is the principal fact-finding agency for the U.S. government in the broad field of labor economics and statistics. The BLS is a governmental statistical agency that collects, processes, analyzes, and...

, as of 2008, there were 22,600 jobs classified as statistician in the United States. Of these people, approximately 30 percent worked for governments (federal, state, or local). Additionally, there are substantial numbers of persons who use statistics in their work but have job titles other than statistician. The job of statistician is considered a profession
A profession is a vocation founded upon specialized educational training, the purpose of which is to supply disinterested counsel and service to others, for a direct and definite compensation, wholly apart from expectation of other business gain....

. Most statisticians work in offices and have regular working hours and can therefore be considered white-collar worker
White-collar worker
The term white-collar worker refers to a person who performs professional, managerial, or administrative work, in contrast with a blue-collar worker, whose job requires manual labor...

s. A minority of statisticians are self-employed statistical consultant
Statistical consultant
A statistical consultant provides statistical advice andguidance to clients interested in making decisions through theanalysis or collection of data. Clients often need statistical advice to answer questions in business, medicine, biology, genetics, forestry, agriculture, fisheries, wildlife...


Most employment as a statistician requires a minimum of a masters degree in statistics or a related field. Many professional statisticians have a PhD
PHD may refer to:*Ph.D., a doctorate of philosophy*Ph.D. , a 1980s British group*PHD finger, a protein sequence*PHD Mountain Software, an outdoor clothing and equipment company*PhD Docbook renderer, an XML renderer...



Civilizations have used the work of statisticians for thousands of years. Statistics was employed in ancient Egypt
Ancient Egypt
Ancient Egypt was an ancient civilization of Northeastern Africa, concentrated along the lower reaches of the Nile River in what is now the modern country of Egypt. Egyptian civilization coalesced around 3150 BC with the political unification of Upper and Lower Egypt under the first pharaoh...

in censuses of population and cattle. Typical work might involve developing a model and sampling plans, analyzing survey results, or contributing to agricultural or econometric forecasts.

External links

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