STA6001W: PhD in Statistical Sciences

The topic of the PhD degree is decided in conjunction with a supervisor. Although every effort will be made to link potential students with a supervisor in the field of the submitted research proposal, it remains the responsibility of the applicant to secure a commitment from a suitable supervisor. The research fields of our staff vary in the areas of Astrostatistics, Biostatistics and Bioinformatics, Ecological statistics, Econometrics and Financial modelling, Multivariate statistics, Decision modelling, Problem structuring and project management, Stochastic processes, Spatial statistics and Statistical Education. For more information on the specific specialisations of staff members, see the Academic staff page

Entrance requirements

A relevant Masters programme demonstrating research ability. Please note that the Department reserve the right to accept you for Masters rather than PhD registration. At the end of one year, your progress will be assessed by the departmental postgraduate committee. Your registration may then be upgraded to a PhD, remain as is for a MSc, or terminated, depending on progress or lack thereof.

Application procedure

Application to the department is facilitated by sending an e-mail containing the following to Ms Celene Jansen-Fielies (

Students are welcome to initiate the application process at any time during the academic year, although registration usually takes place in February or July.

Once the department has indicated provisional acceptance into the PhD programme, official application is to the Science Faculty by completing the online application form


You need to ensure sufficient funds to cover your fees and living expenses. A limited number of university bursaries and other bursaries are available.

You need to apply separately for such funding ( A limited number of tutoring positions are available in the department. The salary would depend on your duties and typically provides not more than R1500 per month for eight or nine months of the year. Note that an offer/acceptance into a postgraduate programme does not automatically ensure or entitle you to a tutorship. The department does not offer any financial assistance to students and it is imperative that students ensure coverage of their own financial needs before they arrive at UCT.

Language requirements

The official language of the university is English. Students may be required to undertake an English proficiency test.

For more information on postgraduate studies (application procedure, funding and rules) of UCT please consult:

Note that the department’s approval of your application is a requirement of registration, but the Faculty may have additional requirements.