Statistics & Data Science Research

There are multiple research opportunities for Statistics and Data Science Concentrators

Congratulations to the following groups of St. Olaf Statistics and Data Science students (or recent students) for placing in a national undergraduate statistics competition:

1st place to Emily Patterson, Spencer Eanes, and Penelope Lancrete for their CIR project “Factors Controlling Coral Skeletal U/Ca Ratios with Implications for their Use as a Proxy for Past Ocean Conditions”.  This is the first time St. Olaf has ever taken 1st place among research projects!
3rd place to Clare McDonald and Emma Daggett for their Stat 272 project “Factors Contributing to Nationwide Happiness in Countries Around the World”.
Both groups now have the opportunity to present their work at the 2020 Electronic Undergraduate Statistics Research Conference on Nov 6.

CIR brings together undergraduate statistics students supervised by statistics faculty with faculty and students from other disciplines to share in the excitement and challenges of working across the traditional academic boundaries to collaborate on research.

CIR Website

Students focus on writing scientific papers, preparing posters, and giving presentations in the context of a specific, yearlong, interdisciplinary research project. In addition, this weekly seminar series builds collaborative research skills such as working in teams, performing reviews of math, statistics, and computer science literature, consulting effectively, and communicating proficiently. Exposure to post-graduate opportunities in math, statistics, and computer science disciplines is also provided. Open to students accepted into the Center for Interdisciplinary Research.


This course provides a comprehensive research opportunity, including an introduction to relevant background material, technical instruction, identification of a meaningful project, and data collection. The topic is determined by the faculty member in charge of the course and may relate to his/her research interests. Prerequisite: Determined by individual instructor. Offered based on department decision. Offered as a 1.00 credit course or .50 credit course.