Who is a statistician?
A statistician is a professional educated in statistics or closely related field. Statistics is a branch of mathematics that is concerned with collection, analysis, interpretation and presentation of scientific data towards solving real problems in health, business, and agriculture among other fields.
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Statisticians’ uses statistical methods and techniques to collect, analyse, interpret and present data in an effort to help towards solving real world problems in engineering, business, healthcare and agriculture among other fields. These professionals design various questionnaires, surveys as well as opinion polls to collect the data that is required for specific projects.
What is statistician’s work environment?
Statisticians work mostly in offices, but may also travel to collect data in the field or to oversee a survey’s design or implementation.
What are some statistician’s career opportunities?
Statisticians are employed by Government, academia, the private sector and Non-Governmental Organizations among other areas.
Statistics jobs opportunities in Kenya can be found in various places. Typical employment areas include; Government ministries and state agencies, pharmaceutical companies, public health agencies/ medical research organizations, engineering companies, academia & research, agricultural companies, banking institutions, research companies, data science firms, insurance companies, business management, consulting firms, applied statistics, Non-Government Organizations, information technology and computing among other areas.
These professionals can also start their own businesses/ self-employment.
How to become a statistician in Kenya
Subject’s choice in secondary schools plays a vital role towards ones future career choice. It is therefore vital for young people to become aware of the various subjects combination required for various career options.
High school subject selection
To pursue a career as a statistician therefore, you will require good performance in the following cluster subjects.
- SUBJECT 1: MAT A,
- SUBJECT 2: PHY,
- SUBJECT 3: 2nd GROUP II or any GROUP III,
- SUBJECT 4: a GROUP II or a GROUP III or any GROUP IV or any GROUP V (subject’s source); JAB/ Kuccps.
Education and Training Routes
If you work hard and score good grades in the above subject’s combination with an overall, KCSE mean grade C+ (plus) and above, you can pursue this career directly in the university (academic route).
However, if you do not qualify for direct university admission for this career option, you can still pursue it through a different route (technical route). Under the technical route, you will pursue a diploma course that can help you further your education and become a statistician.
So what course(s) can you pursue in either route and eventually become a statistician?
Bachelor of Science in Statistics or similar course(s). At least KCSE mean grade C+ (plus) and above.
- Diploma in statistics
- Diploma in computer studies
- Diploma in education majoring in mathematics
- Or other related fields.
These diploma courses require at least KCSE mean grade C- (minus) and above.
It is worthy to note that, with a diploma in any of the above fields, you can either choose to look for a job in line with your training or further your education to your desired career option.
Important skills to have
To work successfully as a statistician, you will be required to possess important skills some of which are listed below.
- Math skills
- Problem-solving skills
- Communication skills
- Analytical skills
- Interpersonal skills
- Creativity skills
- Research skills
- Presentation skills
- Computer skills among other skills
Throughout your education and training, these skills will be emphasized. However, it’s your responsibility to make sure before you enter the job market; you possess much of these skills.
How to Join College and or university
There are two ways you can follow to join training institution(s) in pursuit of your career of choice. The majority way is applying through the Kenya Universities and Colleges Central Placement Service (Kuccps). This is a state owned agency that admits/ places government sponsored students to colleges and universities. One of the advantages of applying through Kuccps is that, upon successful placement, you will pay subsidized fee as a government sponsored student.
To be placed through Kuccps you must have attained a certain pass mark required for various education levels for (degrees/diplomas/certificates etc.) For more details on placement criteria, visit Kuccps website. The second approach is applying directly to training institution of your choice. Students who opt to apply this way do not get government fee subsidy and are therefore self-sponsored.
How to fund your post-secondary education.
If you are a needy student, upon application, you can get education loan from Higher Education Loans Board (HELB), a state owned institution that gives education loans to students joining technical colleges and universities. You can also access education bursaries from your local Member of Parliament (MP) or the County Government among other sources.