The results of a freshly invigorated study by a two-man committee of the Department of Statistics aimed at making concentration in that field available to undergraduates will probably be presented for approval "within a month," according to William G. Cochran, professor of Statistics.
In order for Statistics to be opened to undergraduate concentration, the committee's recommendations must be accepted by the Department Faculty and passed by the Committee on Educational Policy. Cochran's co-member, John W. Pratt, assistant professor of Statistics, said that "it is likely the plan can be devised and submitted to the CEP by spring, and go into effect in the fall." Both committee members agreed that the Department is "very interested" in making concentration in Statistics possible, either by itself or as part of a combined field.
The major stumbling blocks, according to Cochran, are twofold: Firstly, the committee must determine "how many and what kind of students would be interested in concentration," and secondly, whether the Department, with its paucity of lectures, could present "a creditable program."
Cochran said that although the catalogue lists only 13 Statistics courses for graduates and undergraduates, a respectable concentration plan could be devised. The Department has received "mild inquiries" into the possibility of concentration in the field, he said, and he expects "at least a little response" should Statistics be available for concentration in the fall.
A major source of interest in Statistics, according to Pratt, would be as part of a combined field involving social relations, biology, economics, mathematics, geology, psychology, medicine, or others. He said a request was received from a student last spring to concentrate in Statistics and linguistical mathematics.