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Postgraduate degrees in Statistics
The statistics group in Bristol currently offers four postgraduate degrees: the Master of Research (MRes) in Statistics, the taught MSc in Mathematical Scienecs, the MSc by research and the PhD by research. The MRes degree has been introduced in conjunction with the SuSTaIn programme, and is described below. Alternative postgraduate degrees in statistics are described on the main postgraduate admissions page of the statistics group. PhD students funded through the SuSTaIn programme will be initially enrolled in the MRes degree. Subject to satisfactory progress on the MRes programme, students proceed to a thesis project, choosing a topic in a similar way to students admitted directly to the PhD.
Bristol is currently one of the most attractive places in the UK for both home and overseas PhD students in Statistics, rated 4th in the most recent national assessment of research. It has an international reputation as a centre of research excellence, with staff drawn from a number of different countries, and has recently been awarded one of the largest ever grants for a UK statistics group to fund the SuSTaIn programme.
Master of Research (MRes) in Statistics
Partly as a result of SuSTaIn funding, the statistics group in Bristol has introduced a new postgraduate programme - Master of Research (MRes) in Statistics. The programme's primary objective is to form a bridge for strong students between undergraduate and PhD study, allowing them to increase the depth and breadth of their understanding in a range of topics in statistics and probability and develop their overall research perspective and vision before finalising their choice of research project.
In particular, the aim is to develop the student's understanding of appropriate mathematical and statistical theory, equip them with the fundamental skills for the modelling and analysis of statistical problems, and, through the research project, provide them with the opportunity to tackle a genuine statistical problem using a variety of theoretical, analytical, methodological and computational techniques as appropriate.
The MRes is a full one-year taught postgraduate programme, consisting of two semesters of coursework followed by a substantial project dissertation. It is designed to provide high quality postgraduate training in the methods and practice of research, serving as an enhanced route to a PhD or, exceptionally, as a qualification for entry to a research career in industry. It can in principle be taken as a stand alone programme, but we envisage that the majority of students will be already committed to PhD study and will take the MRes as the first year of a 1+3 yr MRes/PhD programme.
The taught component is intended to cover a range of areas at the forefront of current statistics research. Students taking the MRes as the first year of a 1+3 yr MRes/PhD programme will normally take core units in Monte Carlo Methods, Graphical Modelling, Advanced Time Series, Nonparametric Regression, Stochastic Processes and Stochastic Optimization. They will also normally take units in Statistical Computing, Statistical Inference, Statistical Modelling and Statistical Asymptotics, based on externally delivered courses run by the Academy for PhD Training in Statistics, a recently developed national taught course centre for PhD students in the Mathematical Sciences.
Students taking the MRes as a stand-alone programme will normally take the core units in Monte Carlo Methods, Graphical Modelling, Advanced Time Series, Nonparametric Regression, Stochastic Processes and Stochastic Optimization together with other Masters-level units chosen from the currently available list.
In addition, both sets of students may take one (or more) of the wide range of final year undergraduate Probability and Statistics units available in the Department, with the choice depending on each individual student's background and interests.
Students will spend the final third of the course on a project dissertation, giving them the opportunity to develop their capacity for independent and original work while also enhancing their skills in report writing and oral presentation.
A range of assessment methods will be used across the different units, to cater for students with strengths in different areas and to encourage the development of individual transferable skills. This may include standard examinations, extended assignments and presentations, projects based on real data sets, computer practical work with appropriate statistical packages or computer-based examinations. Details will be given in the individual unit descriptions.
Overall, two thirds of the final assessment will be based on the marks from the taught units and one third will be based on the mark for the project dissertation.
The normal minimum requirement for entry to a postgraduate degree in statistics at Bristol is a 2.i Honours degree in Mathematics, or in Statistics, or in a subject with substantial Statistical and/or Mathematical content.
Fees & Funding
Currently funding for the MRes programme is available through the University of Bristol in the form of a limited number of EPSRC Collaborative Training Account studentships, although we cannot fund the full 1+3 programme via Sustain, we do have funding for the Masters year. This can be combined with other funding for a full 1+3 degree, though this funding is particularly limited for non-UK citizens.
Fees for the MRes programme are charged at the standard Bristol rate for postgraduate taught degrees. For 2012-13 this will be £9250 for full-time UK/EU students and £17500 for overseas students.
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