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PicoHenries

Universities for Probability Theory

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I'm a math and statistics major that is highly interested in probability theory, but I've had difficulty finding universities that are strong in probability theory that I would like to apply to. This can probably be explained by probabilists seemingly being dispersed across different departments such as mathematics, statistics, OR, etc. For example, I come from a university where the statistics department is much stronger in probability than the mathematics department.

I was hoping for suggestions on PhD programs to look into - I'm more concerned about the professors and research groups than what department they belong to.

For reference, I expect to have a strong profile - nearly 4.0 major GPA as well as 10+ grad courses in probability, analysis, etc. at a big state school. Multiple papers and publications also.

Thank you!

Edited by PicoHenries

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Also while I'm here, what are good non-obvious (I've taken measure theoretic probability theory and graduate analysis) higher-level courses to boost my preparedness for research into probability theory? 

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If you haven't done so already, you'll get better advice about math programs on mathematics GRE forum, this tends to be mostly statisticians here. 

Do you have any interest in statistics?  There are some probabilists in the top few programs (Berkeley, Chicago, some other top 10 programs) and some lower ranked programs (UNC, Michigan State, maybe Yale) have some probabilists.  A lot of departments will have one or two faculty members who still do probability, but it's really not a big thing.  If you don't have any interest in being a statistician, a math program will probably fit you better.  That being said, I'd look at those programs I mentioned.  With a good profile, schools like Chicago and Berkeley might be obtainable and you could probably be happy there. 

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Thank you!

I'm still probing my interests in statistics, I'm close to obtaining a major in statistics at my university just from my coursework in probability - so I'm checking out some more statistics-based courses to finish out my major.

All I know for sure now is of my interest in probability theory, whether that interest will ultimately be theoretical or applied is not certain yet. For theoretical, I have mostly done work in stochastic processes. For applied, I could see my self enjoying a future where I create models using probabilistic methods.

I would likely be most comfortable in either a mathematics department, or a statistics/OR department with the ability to focus on probability. Berkeley Stats seems like a good example of the latter, albeit perhaps a bit of a reach - would love to know any similar departments. I will definitely look into the schools you mentioned!

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UNC statistics & operations research has a very good probability group and I think it would be a very good fit. You could also explore other interests in statistics in that department. 

You could also apply to Duke math, it has some great probabilists and is a pretty interdisciplinary department that communicates with the stat, electrical engineering, and computer science departments (disclaimer, this is where I did my undergrad). 

If I were you I would consider Princeton and MIT as well (there are some people there doing cool probability things too).

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