What criteria are used for selecting new MAS students?

The MAS admissions committee considers grades — particularly in quantitative courses — along with GRE scores, letters of recommendation, and a statement of purpose. The committee will also take your prior working experience into consideration.

International students should refer to the the English Proficiency section on the Graduate School website for language requirements and criteria.

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Can I take the online MAS program totally online?

Yes, you can take all courses in the MAS program online. There is no residency requirement for this degree.

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What will the online MAS diploma actually say?

Your diploma will state that The Pennsylvania State University grants you the degree of Master of Applied Statistics. Neither the diploma nor the transcript will differentiate the mode (online or otherwise) in which you completed the courses or degree.

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If I have taken some courses at Penn State as a nondegree student, can they be transferred to the MAS program?

A maximum of 15 eligible, nondegree credits can be transferred to a degree program at Penn State. For example, credits taken to fulfill Graduate Certificate in Applied Statistics requirements at Penn State may be transferred to the MAS program if you are granted admission.

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Can credits from another institution be transferred to the MAS program?

A maximum of 10 credits from an accredited external institution may be considered for transfer to the MAS program. These credits must have been received within the past five years and should not have been used to fulfill any other degree requirement. The syllabus and grades for these courses will be reviewed by the MAS admissions committee to determine whether credit is eligible to be transferred.

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What is the math prerequisite for the MAS program?

The math prerequisite for this program is a standard three-course calculus sequence (for example, MATH 140, MATH 141, MATH 230) and sufficient knowledge of matrix algebra. 

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Is a thesis required for the MAS degree?

There is no thesis requirement for this professional degree. You will need to complete the capstone MAS project, which is a course requirement for the core course STAT 581.

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What is the application process if I have been admitted to another graduate degree program at Penn State?

If you have been admitted to a graduate program at Penn State (for example, you have obtained a master’s degree from Penn State), then instead of filing the application form to the Graduate School at Penn State again, you will need to submit the Resume Study/Change of Graduate Degree or Major form to the Graduate School. In addition, you will need to ask your graduate program to send a copy of your previous application material to the MAS admissions committee. You will also need to submit your statement of purpose, any additional transcripts, and three letters of recommendation.

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Can the GRE be waived?

The GRE requirement may be waived only if you hold a doctorate-level degree in a related quantitative field. No waivers will be granted for work experience or existing graduate degrees other than those at the doctorate level. A subject test in the GRE is not required.

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When should I take the GRE?

You should plan to take the GRE at least four weeks prior to the admission deadline. This will allow enough time for us to receive the official score. Learn more about the GRE.

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What is the format of the online courses in this program?

Please visit the Online Learning page on the Department of Statistics website for more information.

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