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Training for the Modern Survey Statistician

Stanislav (Stas) Kolenikov


April 3, 2015
This paper presents the outline of technical skills that a modern survey methodologist needs to be effective in research, study design and survey analyses positions. We provide lists of skills at three tiers: skills required for all survey methodologists, including those who concentrate on social science related research (outlined in another paper in this issue1 skills expected of the master-level survey statisticians; and skills at advanced level, typically associated with doctorate-level survey statisticians. We also identify the training gaps, (i.e., the skills from our lists that we consistently find to be the most difficult ones to develop in academic graduate program setting). We believe that these lists of proficiencies will be helpful to several groups of survey researchers: 1) current students who might have opportunities to find the courses leading to these proficiencies, or even to select the programs to enroll in; 2) early or mid-career statisticians who want to explore their opportunities in the survey profession; 3) and university professors and administrators who want to identify the opportunities to develop new courses and programs that can train highly employable graduates.