Master's Thesis

As part of the Completion Exercise for the Master of Science in Statistical Science, you may write and present your Master's Thesis. This oral examination is administered by your Master's Committee. Students choosing to defend a thesis should begin work on their research as early as possible, preferably in their second semester or summer of their first year in the program. Please give yourself enough time to write your thesis. Your thesis advisor (chair of your committee) should approve your thesis title. The work has to be approved by all members of your committee.

ALL STUDENTS CHOOSING TO DO A THESIS SHOULD PRESENT A THESIS PROPOSAL (MAXIMUM THREE PAGES) TO THE MS DIRECTOR BY OCTOBER 1 (THIRD SEMESTER). THE THESIS PROPOSAL SHOULD INCLUDE A TITLE (TENTATIVE THAT CAN BE REFINED LATER), A LIST OF THREE COMMITTEE MEMBERS (TWO SHOULD BE FROM STATISTICS INCLUDING THE CHAIR) AND A DESCRIPTION OF YOUR WORK.

NOTE: THE MASTERS THESIS COMMITTEE SHOULD BE FORMED AND APPROVED BY GRADUATE SCHOOL AT LEAST 30 DAYS PRIOR TO YOUR DEFENSE. 

For details, see the document below. 

The Thesis consists of a detailed written report on a project approved by the M.S. Director, covering aspects of your contribution to the project area:

  • introduction
  • summary of contributions and results
  • discussion of open questions
  • bibliographic material

The Master's Thesis and its submission must conform to the Duke University Graduate School M.S. thesis requirements.

All students choosing to do Master's Thesis should follow the steps outlined in this document.

Thesis titles of the Spring 2019 Graduates (links coming soon)

Rethinking Non-Linear Instrumental Variables
Clustering-Enhanced Stochastic Gradient MCMC for Hidden Markov Models
Optimal Sparse Decision Trees
Bayesian Density Regression with a Jump Discontinuity at a Given Threshold
Forecasting the Term Structure of Interest Rates: A Bayesian Dynamic Graphical Modeling Approach
Testing Between Different Types of Poisson Mixtures with Applications to Neuroscience
Multiple Imputation of Missing Covariates in Randomized Controlled Trials

Thesis titles of the Spring 2018 Graduates

A Bayesian Strategy to the 20 Question Game with Applications to Recommender Systems
Applied Factor Dynamic Analysis for Macroeconomic Forecasting
A Theory of Statistical Inference for Ensuring the Robustness of Scientific Results
Bayesian Inference Via Partitioning Under Differential Privacy
A Bayesian Forward Simulation Approach to Establishing a Realistic Prior Model for Complex Geometrical Objects
Two Applications of Summary Statistics: Integrating Information Across Genes and Confidence Intervals with Missing Data