Statistics Certificate

Questions about the Statistics Certificate can be directed to

The Statistics certificate is a great fit for students who wish to use statistical principles to solve data problems with a mathematical approach. Students will develop knowledge and skills in analytics and statistics, such as understanding how to work with data and applying their analysis within their given major or domain area.

Statistics continues to be one of the fastest growing employment sectors in the nation and in Wisconsin, and the Statistics certificate will allow a broader range of students to gain these highly desired skills. Students in the certificate will gain “scientific, professional and technological expertise, and a sense of purpose.”

The Statistics certificate curriculum is published in the Guide. It is only available to UW-Madison undergraduate students who are pursuing their bachelor’s degree.

Planning Your Statistics Certificate

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NEW Summer 2024 & Fall 2024 Enrollment Information

Click here to view the summer 2024 enrollment newsletter.

Click here to view the fall 2024 enrollment newsletter.

Please go to to enroll in courses. You can visit this website if you need assistance navigating Course Search & Enroll. The Statistics Enrollment FAQ page is also available here.

Certificate Requirements

The Statistics Certificate requires a total of five courses that add up to at least 13 credits. Please view the full curriculum in the Guide here.

If you are interested in adding the Statistics certificate with another Stats/DS program, please review this combination chart first to see which combinations are allowable and not allowable.

Math and Statistical Background

Prior to declaring, students must complete one introductory statistics course (STAT 240, 301, 324, 371, ECON 310, B M E 325, or I SY E 210) and one calculus course (MATH 221, Math 211, or Math 171 & 217).

In order to complete the probability requirement of the certificate, a minimum completion of Math 222 (calculus w/ algebra & trigonometry 2) or Math 213 (calculus and differential equations) is necessary.

Course Pacing Recommendations

Our general recommendation is to take 1-2 Statistics courses per semester which can be completed in either four or five semesters.

4 Semester Plan

  • Semester 1: Calc 1 (5 cr) and Intro Stats (3-4 cr)
  • Semester 2: Calc 2 (3-4 cr) and STAT 303 (1 cr)
  • Semester 3: Regression (3-4 cr) and Probability (3 cr)
  • Semester 4: Elective (3 cr)

5 Semester Plan

  • Semester 1: Calc 1 (5 cr) and Intro Stats (3-4 cr)
  • Semester 2: Calc 2 (3-4 cr) and STAT 303 (1 cr)
  • Semester 3: Regression (3-4 cr)
  • Semester 4: Probability (3 cr)
  • Semester 5: Elective (3 cr)

Graduation Information

When students apply for graduation, only one major will be listed on their application. It is normal to not see Statistics certificate on your application; you do not need to take any extra steps. Your graduation application applies to all your declared majors and certificates. Instructions on how to apply for graduation are on the Office of the Registrar’s website.

How to Declare the Statistics Certificate

  1. Completion of Calculus 1 (Math 221, Math 211, or Math 171 & 217).
  2. Completion of Introductory Statistics (STAT 240, 301, 324, 371, ECON 310, B M E 325, or I SY E 210).
  3. Not declared in the Statistics major or Data Science major (click here to learn more).
  4. Completion of the Statistics Certificate Advising Canvas Course. Email with your 10 digit Campus ID number on your Wiscard for course enrollment access.

Students are welcome to schedule an appointment if they have further questions or seeking advisement on course enrollment. An advisor meeting is not required to declare.

Advising & Contact Information

Plia Xiong

Plia Xiong

1239 Medical Sciences Center or 

Plia joined the Statistics Department in July 2021. She is a Badger Alumna with a B.S. in Human Development & Family Studies. She enjoys volleyball, badminton, watching movies, and singing.

UW-Madison students can schedule a Zoom, phone, or Zoom appointment with the Statistics Certificate Advisor via Starfish. Individual appointments are great for multiple questions surrounding course planning, career outcomes, or exploring if the Stats certificate is right for them.

Spring 2024 Drop-In Hours: Thursdays from 2-3 PM Central Time. Click here to join the Zoom room. There will be no drop-ins on Thursday, February 29.

Students will be seen first-come, first-served and a wait of up to 10 minutes may be expected. Please have your 10-digit campus ID number ready for advisors.

Drop-in hours are only for students who intend to declare or have questions about the Statistics certificate. Students switching from the Statistics certificate to Statistics major, should follow the declaration steps on the Statistics major page.

In-person drop-in advising is not available.

My office is located in the Medical Sciences Center (MSC), 1300 University Ave.  The easiest way to access my office is via the main entrance on University Ave, then enter the 1205 suite in MSC and head towards the back of the suite.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

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What is the difference between the Statistics major and Statistics certificate?

The Statistics certificate is a good fit for students who want to develop knowledge in statistical skills and analysis to apply it to their major or field. It requires proficiency in math (up to Calculus 2) and statistics.

The Statistics major is a good fit for students who want to advance the field of statistics by using math to interpret data and understand the “why” in how decisions are made and how they affect our society. It requires advanced math of up to Calculus 3, linear algebra, advanced statistics, and one computer programming course.

What is the difference between the Statistics certificate and Data Science certificate?

Statistics provides a mathematical approach to answering data questions at all scales. The Statistics certificate is a good fit for students who want to develop knowledge in statistical skills and analysis to apply it to their major or field (e.g. conducting field trials). Students are required to be proficient in math and statistics.

Data Science provides a computational approach to answering large data questions. The Data Science certificate provides foundational data analysis and programming skills for high-end users of data science tools (e.g. doing large scale genomic analysis). It does not require any calculus, only fulfillment of Quantitative Reasoning A but having some math or algebra background is helpful.

Both certificates provide skills in extracting and analyzing data. It really depends on if you want to develop statistical analysis skills with a foundational background in math or data analysis skills with a foundation in computer programming.

I have an intro stats course that transferred in as two credits. What are my options?

Students who only have two credits of an intro stats course, will need to take an additional statistics elective to help attain the required 13 credit minimum and earn the Statistics certificate.

What do I do if my transfer credits are less than what the certificate requires?

We understand transfer courses may not always equal exactly whole number credits (i.e. sometimes they may look like 1.6 or 1.8 credits). We recommend students to take additional elective courses to help reach the 13 credits minimum to earn the Statistics certificate.

I am interested in research, where can I get started?

Please see the Department of Statistics page on undergraduate research for more information about how to find research opportunities as an undergraduate at UW-Madison. Students can also explore the following research resources too.

What student organizations are related to Statistics?

Student organizations are a great way for Statistics students to get involved on campus. Find a list of current student organizations on  Use keywords that interest you when searching for organizations like “statistics,” “data,” etc. You may take interest in the following organizations:

You may also check out the CDIS student organizations page here.

What resources are available for careers and internships?

SuccessWorks is the career services unit for L&S students and a fantastic partner and resource for career and internship assistance. Statistics is part of the Technology, Data & Analytics Career Community. We strongly recommend checking out our Student Career Resources page for great resources and reading the weekly newsletter (once you are declared) for upcoming events.