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Saturday, October 5
Sat, Oct 5, 7:30 AM - 8:30 AM
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Modeling Growth Trajectories of Applied Statistics Fields: Public Interest, Degree Offerings, and Popular Sentiment (306729)

*Nana Amma Berko Asamoah, University of Arkansas 
Samantha Elizabeth Robinson, University of Arkansas 

Keywords: Data Science, Biostatistics, Google Trends, Twitter, Sentiment Analysis

The American Statistical Association (ASA) expects statistics graduates to “think with data”. With vast amounts of data available to leaders in industry, government, and academia, deriving valuable insights from data is now a horizontal market. Rising demand for analytical skills is echoed by rising numbers of degree offerings in ‘applied’ statistics. Data science, the study of generalizable extraction of knowledge from data, is a new and yet exploding field. Biostatistics, gaining momentum since the 1990s as an alternative to traditional statistics, involves the application of statistical theory and methods to topics in biology and related fields. Using data from Google Trends, Twitter, and ASA, this paper examines the growing trend in ‘applied’ statistics by exploring the relationships between data science and biostatistics. Exponential smoothing models examine time trends in (1) Google searches for data science and biostatistics, (2) the number degrees offered in these fields, and (3) the number of students graduating. Sentiment analysis examines public attitudes about the two fields. Results allow for insights into the recent growth trajectories of ‘applied’ statistics fields.