About this course
Boost your career as a statistician on this flexible course aimed at those working in UK government statistical services or similar organisations overseas. Gain specialist skills and knowledge that are central to the conduct of professional statistical work in government. You’ll graduate with the in-depth understanding and practical skills to take your career to the next level.
This UK master’s course has been developed in partnership with The Government Statistical Service (GSS) to provide the core skills and knowledge you'll need as a professional government statistician.
The topics you’ll study are closely aligned with the procedures for measurement and evaluation in government and related organisations.
But many of the skills we teach, such as survey methods and data analysis, are also in demand by non-government organisations conducting large-scale statistical work.
You’ll strengthen and update your knowledge in key areas such as:
- demographic methods
- regression modelling
- planning and running surveys
- government statistics
- evaluation and monitoring
Please note that some of the modules on this course are taught at the ONS office in Newport, Wales.
The University of Southampton has a strong reputation for research in statistics. We have major research contracts with the UK and EU government statistical agencies, and are heavily involved in EU Framework research projects.
The course is supported by the GSS Human Resource Committee and the Office for National Statistics’ Human Resource Committee.
There is also an option to undertake additional modules and a placement, which can lead to the European Masters in Official Statistics (EMOS) award from Eurostat.
If you prefer, you can apply to study this course as:
- a part-time master's - study the same course content over 2 or more years
- a Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) - you'll usually study for around 15 weeks and will not need to write a dissertation
- a Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip) - you'll usually study for around 30 weeks and will not need to write a dissertation
Your modules and fees may vary if you choose a different study option.
Your course leader is Paul Smith, Professor of Official Statistics. He is a member of the Royal Statistical Society, and has a special interest in sampling and estimation methods in government surveys. Read Professor Smith’s staff profile to find out more about his work.
This course is accredited by:
This course is based at Highfield.
This qualification is awarded by the University of Southampton.
Download the programme specification
The programme specification sets out the learning outcomes of this course and details how the course is taught and assessed.
You’ll need a 2:2 degree in a subject involving some exposure to statistical methods, such as:
- population sciences
If your degree doesn’t have any statistical content, we’ll ask you to show that you have the necessary background knowledge to the level of the Royal Statistical Society Higher Certificate in Statistics.
If you’re successful in your application to join this course, you’ll need to attend an introductory revision module covering basic maths and statistics in September before the course starts.
Find the equivalent international qualifications for your country.
Recognition of professional experience
You should be currently employed in official statistics, but previous professional experience might be taken into account.
Got a question?
If you're not sure that you have the right experience or qualifications to get onto this course please contact our enquiries team; we're very happy to help.Email: email@example.com
Tel: +44(0)23 8059 5000
This master’s course can be taken either full-time or part-time.
The full-time course runs for a full 12 months, from September to the following September.
For the first 8 months (semesters 1 and 2) you'll focus on the taught part of your course.
Each semester is made up of a combination of modules that everyone on the course takes, and modules that we’ll ask you to choose from a list of options.
For the remainder of the course, you’ll work independently on your dissertation.
The part-time master’s course runs for a maximum of 4 academic years. You must complete the taught part must be within 3.5 academic years. You’ll spend the remaining 6 months researching and writing your dissertation.
Want more detail? See all the modules in the course.
For entry in Academic Year 2019-20
You must study the following modules in year 1:
You must also choose from the following modules in year 1:
Learning and assessment
The learning activities for this course include:
- group work
- project work
- independent study
We’ll assess you through:
- written exams
- a dissertation
You’ll research and write a 15,000 to 20,000-word dissertation on a subject of your choice, to be agreed with your supervisor.
Dissertations usually involve the application of methods you’ve learned during the taught part of the course. They’re a chance for you to develop your research skills and show in-depth knowledge of a particular topic.
Typical subjects might include:
- the study of non-response in a survey
- the redesign of a survey
- reconciling estimates from two different sources
- a detailed analysis of a dataset
You’ll have regular support meetings with your supervisor throughout the process.
You’ll be assigned a personal academic tutor and have access to a senior tutor.
The skills you develop on this course will enhance your current work as a statistician, or open up new career routes for you.
Statisticians are in demand in a wide range of sectors, including:
- the environment
- market research
Careers services at Southampton
We're a top 20 UK university for employability (QS Graduate Employability Rankings 2019). Our Careers and Employability Service will support you throughout your time as a student and for up to 5 years after graduation. This support includes:
- work experience schemes
- CV/resume and interview skills workshops
- networking events
- careers fairs attended by top employers
- a wealth of volunteering opportunities
- study abroad and summer school opportunities
We have a vibrant entrepreneurship culture. You'll be able to take advantage of:
Fees, costs and funding
Fees for a year's study:
- UK/EU students pay £9,000.
- International students pay £9,351.
What your fees pay for
Your tuition fee covers the full cost of tuition and all examinations.
10% alumni discount
If you’re a graduate of the University of Southampton you get a 10% discount on your postgraduate tuition fees.
Postgraduate Master’s Loans (UK and EU nationals only)
This can help with course fees and living costs while you study a postgraduate master's course. Find out if you're eligible.
Funding your postgraduate studies
A variety of additional scholarships, grants and bursaries may be available to help you fund your master’s study, both from the University and from other organisations.
How to apply
You can apply directly through our online form by using the apply button on this page.
Applications must be received no later than 4 weeks before the start of the course. You must supply all supporting documentation at least two weeks before starting your course.
We recommend you apply at least 6 weeks before the start of the course to ensure you're able to meet our requirements and apply for a visa in time.
We cannot guarantee students who do not meet these deadlines will be able to begin their course.
When you apply you’ll need to submit a personal statement explaining why you want to take the course.
You’ll need to include information about:
- your knowledge of the subject area
- why you want to study a postgraduate qualification in this course
- how you intend to use your qualification
You'll also need to send 2 academic references.
Please include the required paperwork showing your first degree and your IELTS English language test score (if you are a non-native English speaker) with your application. Without these, your application may be delayed.
Learn more about how to apply with our postgraduate application guide.
What happens after you apply
You'll be able to track your application through our online Applicant Record System.
We will assess your application on the strength of your:
- academic achievements
- relevant professional experience
- personal statement
- academic references
We'll get back to you within 6 weeks with a decision about your application.
Equality and diversity
We treat and select everyone in line with our Equality and Diversity Statement.
Got a question?
Please contact us if you're not sure you have the right experience or qualifications to get onto this course.
Tel: +44(0)23 8059 5000