Menu Close

Offered by the Department of Statistics

Statistics is a Science where the related theories and methods can be applied to a wide variety of disciplines. The truth is that no applied science is complete without statistical reasoning and support. Statistics offers a wide range of career opportunities in many fields. In general, applied statisticians can easily fit into many careers in, Computer Science, Agriculture, Education, Medicine, Economics, and Marketing, to name but a few.

The Department of Statistics (DST) conducts a two year part time course leading to PG Dip / MSc in Applied Statistics. The course was originally designed and implemented in year 1976, with the assistance from the Department of Applied Statistics, University of Reading, which is a leading University in the UK.

The programme consists of two components are Coursework and Research. After successful completion of the coursework component the students may leave with a Postgraduate Diploma, if necessary criteria are met. Those who wish to obtain the M.Sc in Applied Statistics whilst meeting the necessary criteria should start research under the guidance of expert staff in the relevant area.


A bachelor's degree in Science (BSc) from a recognized University


Any other equivalent qualification acceptable to the University of Colombo


Any other requirement stipulated in the program.

Course Fees

LKR 225,000/-

Course Fee:
Postgraduate Diploma: LKR 150,000/-
Master's Degree: LKR 225,000/-

*In addition, students are expected to pay registration fees, library fees and examination fees.

Registration for 2021 intake

The inauguration ceremony of the 2020 Intake was held on 10th of December 2020.

Please fill the pre-registration form to keep in touch.

How to apply

A non-refundable application fee of Rs. 2000/- should be credited to University of Colombo, Account No. 314052200007. Payments should only be made at People’s Bank branches island wide.

Duly completed application forms should be submitted to the following address.

Senior Assistant Registrar
Faculty of Science,
University of Colombo, Colombo 3

*Application forms are also available at the Academic & Publications Branch of the University of Colombo on presenting the payment of the application fee. Candidates will be chosen based on a written exam & an interview

Programme Duration

Duration of the entire program is 18 months / 27 months (3 semesters/ 4 semesters). The program consists of course work/ and a research project.

Course Schedule / Facilities

Lectures will be conducted on Saturdays and two weekday evenings, whenever necessary (Wednesday and Friday). Students will also have access to the University library and fully equipped computer laboratory at the DST.

Course Aims

In many institutions in Sri Lanka, raw graduates are recruited as research assistants, officers, statisticians, or statistical officers/ investigators, and have little practical experience in the use of statistics. This course is aimed at providing training to such persons, as well as to those in other fields that demand such experience. The course emphasizes practical work involving real data analysis which would give the students a measure of confidence in handling real-life situations.

Programme Structure

The medium of Instructions is English. The course consists of two components are Coursework component (3 Semesters) and Research component (1 Semester). The coursework component consists of course work, practicals, a group-project and examinations at the end of each of the three semesters. The exam papers and answer scripts are moderated and further examined by foreign academic experts.  Proceeding to the final semester is purely based on the performance of the coursework component. Those who proceed to the MSc in Applied Statistics will be evaluated and further examined through a viva voce examination.

Course Modules

PART I (25 credits)

Course Code Name Hours/ Credits
MAS 5101 Probability and Distributions 30L, 2C
MAS 5102 Statistical Methods 30L, 2C
MAS 5201 Surveys and Sampling 30L, 2C
MAS 5202 Experimental Design 30L, 2C
MAS 5301 Industrial Statistics 30L, 2C
MAS 5302 Linear and Non-linear Models 30L, 2C
MAS 5402 Group Project 3 months, 2C
MAS 5403 Case Studies 30P, 1C
MAS 5404 Data Analysis using Statistical Packages 15L/ 30P, 2C
MAS 5501 Advanced Inference 15L, 1C
MAS 5502 Computer Intensive Methods 15L, 1C
MAS 5503 Medical Statistics 30L, 2C
MAS 5601 Applied Time Series 30L, 2C
MAS 5602 Multivariate Methods 30L, 2C

PART II (6 credits)

Course Code Name Credits
MAS 5701 Individual Research Project 6 months, 6C

Panel of Lecturers

Prof. W N Wickremasinghe, PhD (Kansas State, USA) – (Experimental Design, Linear Models, Non-replicated Experiments)
Dr. (Miss) C D Tilakaratne, PhD (Ballarat, AUS) – (Time Series, Financial Data Mining)
Dr. (Mrs) M D T Attygalle, PhD (Lancaster, UK) – (Statistical Modelling)
Dr. R A B Abeygunawardana, M.Sc. (Colombo) – (Statistical Quality Control)
Dr. (Mrs) C H Magalla, PhD (Kansas State, USA) – (Linear and non-linear Models, Multivariate Statistics)
Dr. (Mrs) J H D S P Tissera, PhD (La Trobe, AUS) – (Simulations, Statistical Computing, Computational Statistics)
Mr. E R A D Bandara, M.Phil. (Colombo) – (Statistical Inference, Functional Data)
Dr. G P Lakraj, PhD(Texas Tech, USA) – (Statistical Inference)
Dr. R V Jayatillake, PhD (Old Dominion, USA) – (Medical Statistics)
Dr. S D Viswakula, PhD (Old Dominion, USA) – (Bioinformatics, Biostatistics)
Dr. A A Sunethra, PhD (Colombo) – (Survival Analysis, Joint Modelling)
Dr. K A D Deshani, PhD (Colombo) – [Course Coordinator] (Operational Research)
Mrs. I T Jayamanne, MFE (Colombo) – (Survey and Sampling, Statistical Modeling)

Further Information

Further information regarding the MSc Programme can be obtained by contacting the programme coordinator.

Contact details of the programme coordinators are as follows

Intake Coordinator Email
2020 Dr. K A D Deshani
2019 Dr. A A Sunethra
2018 Dr. S D Viswakula
2017 Dr. G P Lakraj
2016 Dr. Rasika Jayatillake
2016 Mr. E R A D Bandara