Carnegie Mellon University

MSP Curriculum

The Master of Statistical Practice degree is an intensive two-semester professional master's program that emphasizes statistical practice, methods, data analysis, and practical workplace skills.

The MSP is for students who are interested in professional careers in business, industry, government, marketing, or scientific research, or continuing in graduate school. There is no thesis requirement for this program.

Program Design

To learn more about the pedagogy and design of the MSP curriculum, check out our article in The American Statistician: On Teaching Statistical Practice: From Novice to Expert.

Fall 2022 Schedule of Courses

Core Curriculum Courses

  • 36-611 (6 units): Professional Skills for Statisticians I
  • 36-613 (6 units): Data Visualization - [this is a mini-course]
  • 36-614 (6 units): Data Engineering and Distributed Environments - [this is a mini-course and must be taken immediately after completing 36-613]
  • 36-617 (12 units):  Applied Linear Models
  • 36-650 (9 units):  Statistical Computing 

Elective Courses: Students must select one of the following courses

  • 36-668 (9 units):  Text Analysis or select
  • 36-661 (9-units)   Statistical Methods in Epidemiology

Spring 2023 Schedule of Courses will be shared later this fall. 

MSP students are typically not permitted to take courses outside of the Department of Statistics & Data Science. Normally, all the MSP students take core requirements together as a cohort. Electives are offered on a rotating basis.

*Alternative courses within the Department of Statistics & Data Science may be allowed as a substitute should a comparable course of study already have been successfully completed prior to entry into the MSP program — any substitutions are considered on a case-by-case basis and must be approved by the program directors.

36-726 "Statistical Practice"

One of the hallmarks of the MSP program is our course, 36-726 "Statistical Practice". The focus of this course is a consulting project. These projects come from companies in and around Pittsburgh as well as on campus. A select set of these projects are listed below.

These are real projects, new each year, with clients who are interesting in the results, and no predetermined "solutions". Students work in groups of two or three and are supervised by a faculty member.

  • US Department of Labor - "Child Labor in Uganda & Ethiopia"
  • Fox Chapel Area School District - "Benchmark Data Correlation Study"
  • Allegheny General Hospital - "Patient-Centered Analysis of Interventions & Outcomes in Recurrent Respiratory Papillomatosis"
  • CMU Department of Physics - "Galaxy Lookalikes & The Expanding Universe"
  • Pittsburgh Public Schools - "Assessing the Effectiveness of Pre-K Programs"
  • Pittsburgh Police Bureau - "Epidemiology of Homicides in Pittsburgh"
  • Civic Light Opera - "Predicting Ticket Sales"
  • Corporate Sales - "Predicting Sales by Site for a Large Building Supply Company"
  • Analytics - "Automating Question Selection for Online-Questionairres"
  • Healthcare - "Early Detection of Opioid Abuse"
  • Sports Analytics - "Making Best Use of the Hockey Draft"
  • Internet Market Research - "Predicting Consumer Behavior from Online Polling Data"
  • Heinz School - Public Policy - "Is the Death Penalty a Deterrent for Committing Homicide?"
  • Carnegie Mellon: On-line Learning - "Assessing the Effect of On-line Learning"
  • Carnegie Mellon: Psychology - "Relationship Predictors of Care of Diabetes in Couples"
  • Carnegie Mellon: English - "Analysis of Hillary Clinton's Rhetorical Style"