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Mathematics and Statistics

The Oxford Mathematics courses have for many years included options in Statistics. In response to strong demand for statistical knowledge, there is now a joint degree course in the two disciplines.

Statistics is a subject that studies numbers which are in some sense descriptive. As an academic study, it concerns the underlying, largely mathematical, theory relating the characteristics of a population to the statistics drawn from a sample of its members. Statistics, like Mathematics, is an intellectual discipline in its own right, and also an essential tool in many other fields of study.

The first year of the Mathematics and Statistics course is identical to the first year of the Mathematics degree (see here for details).

The second year has some differences from the Mathematics degree. The courses in Probability and Statistics are compulsory for Mathematics and Statistics students (rather than optional), and Mathematics and Statistics students have access to an additional long option on Simulation & Statistical Programming.

In the third year students take eight units of courses and the course in Applied and Computational Statistics is compulsory (and counts as two units). At least two courses must also be taken from the list below. Mathematics and Statistics students can also choose courses from the Mathematics department options (see here for details).

  • Applied Probability (covering probabilistic modelling with continuous-time Markov chains, and applications such as queuing theory)
  • Foundations of Statistical Inference (understanding how data can be interpreted in the context of a statistical model)
  • Statistical Machine Learning (covering a number of different machine learning methods and how to choose an appropriate method)
  • Statistical Lifetime Models (estimating event-time distributions, which appear in many social and medical data contexts)

Admissions to the Mathematics and Statistics course is joint with Mathematics. Applicants do not choose between the two degrees until the end of their fourth term at Oxford.

There are two Mathematics and Statistics degrees, the three-year BA and the four-year MMath. You can wait until your third year before deciding whether to complete a BA that year or proceed to the MMath in a fourth year

The Mathematical Sciences departmental prospectus contains information about the course content and can be found here.


Professor Andrew Dancer

Professor Andrew Dancer’s research is in differential geometry, especially the study of Einstein spaces. He is responsible for the teaching of pure mathematics including algebra, analysis, geometry and topology.

Dr James Oliver

Dr James Oliver’s research is predominantly in fluid dynamics and its applications to free and moving boundary problems in industry, engineering and biology. He teaches Physical Applied Mathematics.

Professor Robin Evans

Professor Robin Evans teaches probability and statistics for the College. His research interests include statistical causality, graphical models and algebraic statistics.

Professor George Deligiannidis

Professor George Deligiannidis teaches Statistics, Probability, and Simulation. His research interests are in Probability, Limit Theorems, Monte Carlo methods, especially MCMC.

Professor Judith Rousseau

Professor Judith Rousseau’s research is on Bayesian statistics, studying the interactions between Bayesian and frequentist approaches. She teaches Applied mathematics.

The deadline to submit your application for undergraduate study via UCAS is 15 October. Please refer to the University’s webpages for detailed information on how to apply.

Places available at Jesus College

In a total College entry of about 100 undergraduates, 8 are offered places in a typical year to read Mathematics and the related Joint Schools courses.

Academic requirements

Academic requirements for this subject can be found here.

Selection criteria

The specific selection criteria are given on the department’s website here.

Admissions tests

All candidates must take the Mathematics Admissions Test (MAT) as part of their application. The registration deadline and test date are published on the University’s website. We strongly recommend making the arrangements in plenty of time before the deadline. Everything you need to know, including how to register and guidance on how to prepare, can be found can be found here.

Written work

You do not need to submit any written work as part of an application for this course.


If you are interviewed at Jesus you can expect two or three separate interviews with different tutors. The interviews will involve some general questions, but most of the time will be spent discussing mathematical topics.

Deferred Entry

Please refer to the Departmental website for subject-specific advice.

The Tutors have no objection in principle to offering a place to a candidate who wishes to defer entry for a year, provided this intention is made known at the outset. You must apply for deferred entry at the time of application to Oxford: you cannot change your mind after an offer has been made.

You should be aware that applicants who are offered places for deferred entry will generally be among the very strongest of the cohort for their subject, and the College limits its offers of deferred places in order not to disadvantage candidates applying in the following year. In some cases, an applicant for deferred entry may be offered a place for non-deferred entry instead.

Joint Schools

Mathematics can studied as a single discipline and is also available as a joint course as follows:

The Mathematical Institute at Oxford enjoys a high reputation, both nationally and internationally, for the excellence of its teaching and research, and is among the largest in the country. Mathematical research at Oxford covers a very wide range in both pure and applied mathematics. It attracts generous research funding and draws students and visiting faculty from all parts of the world. The following degrees are available at postgraduate level:

  • DPhil or MSc by Research in Mathematics
  • MSc Mathematical and Computational Finance [Jesus College does not normally accept students for this course]
  • MSc Mathematical and Theoretical Physics
  • MSc Mathematical Modelling and Scientific Computing
  • MSc Mathematical Sciences
  • MSc Mathematics and the Foundations of Computer Science
  • EPSRC CDT Mathematics of Random Systems: Analysis, Modelling and Algorithms

The Department of Statistics has teaching and research strengths in a wide range of modern and exciting areas of statistical science. The following postgraduate degrees are offered:

  • DPhil or MSc by Research in Statistics (including the StatML CDT)
  • MSc or PGDip Statistical Science

The Mathematics and Statistics joint degree provides excellent training for a wide variety of careers in which advanced statistical techniques are applied, for example in financial analysis, the epidemiology of infectious diseases, genetics, and business analytics. The growth of ‘big data’ in internet based businesses has led to a proliferation of exciting career paths in data science. Maths graduates are a large source of recruitment for careers in statistics and the closely related field of operational research, and are also much in demand in the insurance and financial services professions, especially those whose studies have included a substantial component of statistics and applied probability. For example, recent statistics show that 15% of Oxford Mathematics graduates join the finance sector.

If you have any questions about entrance requirements, or about applying to study at Jesus College, please contact the Admissions Officer: