The Department of Statistical Science is nationally ranked in the top 5 research departments and as a top 10 graduate program. Recognized as the world's leading center for Bayesian statistics and its interdisciplinary applications, the Department is a Duke campus hub for statistical and computational research. The Department administers and teaches a broad range of undergraduate statistics courses, including introductory courses and more advanced courses for the Statistical Science major, as well as many courses in statistics and related areas at the M.S. and Ph.D. level.
The Ph.D. program is distinguished by its strong focuses in complex stochastic modeling, Bayesian statistics, scientific computation, and inter-disciplinary statistics research. These attributes are shared by the department's Master's of Science programs in Statistical Science (MSS), and in Statistical and Economic Modeling (MSEM) which provide foundations for students interested in careers in industry or pursuing a PhD.
Established in 1987, the Department began life as a free-standing Duke institute—the Institute of Statistics and Decision Sciences (ISDS). In 1990, ISDS became a department of the Duke School of Arts & Sciences. In 2007, with the establishment of a research-connected undergraduate Major, the name was changed to Department of Statistical Science. In 2012, the Department celebrated its 25th Anniversary ; the video of opening remarks from the event recounts the history of the Department in more detail.