The ASA published its 2014 Curriculum Guidelines for Undergraduate Programs in Statistical Science. The guidelines remain true to the previous guidelines, while allowing for an increased emphasis in topics such as Big Data and statistical software.
The guidelines state that students need a deep understanding of fundamental concepts and exposure to a variety of topics and methods. The curriculum should provide students with sufficient background in the following areas:
- Statistical methods and theory (e.g., design of studies, statistical modeling, exploratory data analysis, etc.)
- Data manipulation and computation
- Mathematical foundations (e.g., calculus, linear algebra, probability, and their connections with statistics)
- Statistical practice (including strong communication and technical skills)
Statistics Minors or Concentrations
The guidelines also include a section on minors and concentrations. For quantitatively oriented students in fields such as mathematics, biology, business, and behavioral and social sciences, or those planning to teach at the K–12 level, such minors or concentrations may be more feasible than a full statistics major. The core of a statistics minor or concentration should consist of the following:
- General statistical methodology (e.g., statistical thinking, estimation, testing, resampling)
- Statistical modeling (e.g., simple and multiple regression, confounding, diagnostics)
- Facility with professional software and data management skills
- Multiple experiences analyzing data and communicating results
An older article by Ann Cannon, et al. also discusses the statistics minor and offers answers to questions that might arise about a particular curriculum design or revision.