The University of Alaska Fairbanks is reputed for its strength in the natural
sciences, especially in those areas touching on the arctic environment. Many
institutes and departments on campus use statistical methodology in their
research, among them the Institute of Arctic Biology, the Institute of Marine
Sciences, the Geophysical Institute, the Department of Biology and Wildlife and
the Fisheries Division. The interdisciplinary master of science program with
specialization in statistics was established by the Department of Mathematical
Sciences in 1997 and builds upon UAF’s strength in the natural sciences by
introducing a strong quantitative alternative to existing programs. Graduates
of this program could be labeled quantitative biologists, biometricians,
quantitative geologists, geostatisticians, or mathematical statisticians
depending upon their specific coursework. In addition, this program will
prepare individuals for Ph.D. level work in statistics of their area of
application.
Possible areas of specialization include mathematical biology, wildlife, fisheries, geology, forestry, agriculture, and marine sciences. Areas of specialization other than the natural sciences could be considered as well including, for example, psychometrics and econometrics. Ph.D. level students in these areas can pursue the M.S. program in statistics simultaneously. The program is intended to take two academic years to complete for qualified individuals and will not interfere with summer field work in the area of specialization.
Graduates of the program will be qualified to do the following:
Of the 13 graduates from the class of 19972001, four are now biometricians for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, three are working for UAF biological or geological research programs, one works as a government health statistician, one is a university administrator, one is a statistical consultant, one is enrolled in a Ph.D. program is statistics, one is a college teacher, and one is a consultant in a marine sciences research institute.
The program is built around four statistics core courses and existing statistics courses at UAF. The core courses are designed to blend the two semesters of mathematical statistics typical of an M.S. program in statistics with real applications. Such a blending requires a third semester but provides a substantial improvement in the graduate's skills, see course descriptions below.
The Department of Mathematical Sciences offers several teaching assistant positions, consisting of a stipend ($12,000 for 9 months) and tuition waiver. Several students have research assistantships. Some students already enrolled in other programs are externally supported.
The program may be taken with either a thesis or project.
All students in this interdisciplinary program must pass the following examinations:
To be admitted to the program, an applicant must complete the general UAF procedures for admission into an interdisciplinary graduate program and submit the following:
The applicant must select a graduate advisory committee consisting of at least two statistics program faculty members and two faculty members in another discipline and have the commitment of one of the statistics faculty to chair the committee.
The student may be asked to take courses to remedy deficiencies identified by the advisory committee. The advisory committee can also decide, in accordance with university policy, whether specific transfer graduate courses may be allowed as part of the program (at most 9 credits).
The student must satisfy the general university requirements, in particular, complete a minimum of 30 semester credits of which at least 24 credits must be at the 600 level (including those earned for thesis or research projects which are limited to a maximum of 12 credits).
The program requires the following specific requirements:
I. Complete the M.S. Core Statistics Courses: 

STAT651 
Statistical Theory I 
3 credits 
STAT 652 
Statistical Theory II 
4 credits 
STAT 653 
Statistical Theory III 
3 credits 
STAT 654 
Consulting Seminar 
1 credit 
STAT 698 
Research/Project 
3 credits 

14 Credits 

II. Complete at least 6 Credits of Statistics Courses from the following list: 

STAT461 
Applied Multivariate Statistics 
3 credits 
STAT 602 
Experimental Design 
3 credits 
STAT 631 
Categorical Data Analysis 
3 credits 
STAT 661 
Sampling Theory 
3 credits 
STAT 605 
Spatial Statistics 
3 credits 
STAT 611 
Time Series 
3 credits 

6 credit subtotal 

Complete at least 6 Credits of approved courses from an application area of specialization or courses with substantial statistical and/or mathematical content.
III. The following are examples of courses for specific areas of concentration: 

Wildlife* 
WLF 621 and WLF 694; STAT 402 recommended 

Fisheries* 
FISH 601 and FISH 602; STAT 402 recommended 


OR 


FISH 621 and FISH 622; STAT 402 recommended 

Mathematical Statistics 
MATH 641 and MATH 660; many other possibilities 

Geology 
GEOS 430 and GE/MIN 635 

Econometrics 
ECON 626 and ECON 636 

As UAF has strong graduate programs in Fisheries, Marine Science, Wildlife, Biology, Geophysics, among others, there are many available graduatelevel applications courses. Please check out the links at the bottom of this document for more information. *  Courses useful for State of Alaska Biometrician qualification.
IV) Complete approved elective courses, 8 credit subtotal
30 credits TOTAL
· Statistics Graduate Course Descriptions
· Statistics Undergraduate Course Descriptions
·
Course Offerings,
Spring 2001
NOTES: STAT480 "Topics in Statistics" may be retaken for credit as long as the topic varies. Past topics have included: Introduction to Splus
.
The Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) currently has 33 fulltime biometricians. Historically, ADF&G has had difficulty recruiting biometricians and commonly recruits outside Alaska because of a lack of adequately trained individuals within the state. ADF&G had four such positions vacant in May 1995. The Commissioner of ADF&G wrote to UAF Dean Alexander of the School of Fisheries and Ocean Sciences that same month suggesting that the university offer additional biometrics coursework and potentially a degree program in this area.
The minimum qualifications for the biometrician register include a masters degree in statistics, biometrics, or in one of the biological sciences with 18 semester hours in graduate level biometrics or statistics courses. The program will well qualify graduates for state biometrician positions. Our program was developed in close consultation with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.
Department of Mathematical Sciences
Dana Thomas, Ph.D. Professor and Department Chair. At UAF since 1981. Chair of the Dept. of Mathematical Sciences. Oregon State University '82 Ph.D. Specializes in Experimental Design, Simultaneous Inference, Design and Analysis of Resource Selection Studies. http://www.uafcs.alaska.edu/~thomas
Pham Quang, Ph.D. Professor Emeritas. At UAF since 1985. University of California, Berkeley '74 Ph.D. Specializes in Theoretical Statistics and Sampling Designs (especially as applied to animal abundance estimation). http://www.uafcs.alaska.edu/~quang
Ron Barry, Ph.D. Associate Professor. At UAF since 1991. University of California, Irvine '91, Ph.D. Specializes in Experimental Design and Spatial Statistics. http://www.uafcs.alaska.edu/~barry
Shunpu Zhang, Ph.D. Assistant Professor. At UAF since 1997. University of Alberta '97, Ph.D. Specializes in Empirical Bayes Methods and Nonparametric Function Estimation. http://www.uafcs.alaska.edu/~zhang
All of the faculty members regularly publish peerreviewed articles in statistics. As part of their workload, they also regularly offer consulting services to graduate students and researchers at UAF, especially those studying wildlife biology and fisheries. They maintain close ties to biometricians in State and Federal Agencies, through their leadership in the Alaska Chapter of the American Statistical Association and through extensive research collaboration with biometricans and researchers. As an example of this collaboration, the statistics faculty has a cooperative research agreement with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game that facilitates the awarding of grants to statistics students and faculty.
Affilite Faculty
Robert Fagen, Ph.D. Associate Professor, School of Fisheries and Ocean Science (Juneau)
Ed Murphy, Ph.D. Professor, Department of Biology and Wildlife
Terrance Quinn II, Ph.D. Professor, School of Fisheries and Ocean Science (Juneau)
Eric Rexstad, Ph.D. Associate Professor, Department of Biology and Wildlife
Jay Ver Hoef, Ph.D. Adjunct Professor, Alaska Department of Fish and Game. http://www.uafcs.alaska.edu/~asa/jaycv.html
EXAMPLE TWOYEAR PROGRAM
Fall 2000: Statistical
Theory I (STAT651), Experimental Design (STAT602), applied elective (3 cr.).
Spring 2001: Statistical Theory II
(STAT652), Sampling Theory (STAT661), Time Series Analysis (STAT611).
Fall 2001: Statistical Theory III (STAT653),
applied elective (3 cr.), Categorical Data Analysis (STAT631)
Spring 2002: Spatial Statistics (STAT605),
Statistical Consulting Seminar (STAT654), Topics in Statistics (STAT480),
applied elective (3 cr.),
Project
(3 cr.).
TOTAL GRADUATE CREDITS: 30 to 36 cr.
Ronald Barry, Department of Mathematical Science, University of Alaska Fairbanks, Fairbanks, AK 997756660. Phone: (907) 4747226, Fax: (907)4745394, email: ffrpb@uaf.edu
Applicants may apply at any time up to the beginning of their first semester. However, if an applicant is interested in obtaining a teaching assistantship, they should apply before March 1.
· General Information for Prospective Students
· Admission to UAF graduate programs
· Applications for admission
Also of interest:
For more information, feel free to contact Ronald Barry.
Dept. of Mathematical Sciences
University of Alaska Fairbanks
Fairbanks, Alaska 997756660
ffrpb@aurora.alaska.edu
(907)4747226
Revised: Aug. 19, 2002