The Institute of Statistical Research and Training (ISRT), University of Dhaka, is the leading institution for training and research in Applied Statistics in Bangladesh. It was founded in 1964 by the Late National Professor Dr. Qazi Motahar Husain, an eminent scientist, academician, and a leading proponent of the statistical sciences in this country. Dr. Husain was the founder Director and the current Director is Professor Dr. Tamanna Howlader.
Starting from the session 2022-2023, the renowned Applied Statistics program has been transformed into Applied Statistics and Data Science. The Institute offers a 4-year B.S. (Honors), 1-year M.S., M.Phil., Ph.D. degree programs in Applied Statistics and Data Science. Each program’s syllabus has been expanded to include a wide range of courses focused on data science, reflecting the growing importance and demand for data-driven skills in today’s evolving job market. Since its inception in the 1994-1995 session, the Applied Statistics B.S. and M.S. programs have been renowned for providing students with a strong foundation in statistical concepts and methodologies. However, with the rapid expansion of data and the increasing need for professionals who can analyze and interpret it effectively, the program has embraced this transformation to incorporate the emerging field of data science.
Under the new curriculum, students will have the opportunity to explore and master various aspects of data science. Prominent courses under the data science umbrella have been introduced. The new curriculum has been thoughtfully designed to equip students with the necessary knowledge and practical skills required to tackle large datasets, extract meaningful insights, and make data-driven decisions. In today’s data-rich environment, professionals equipped with expertise in data science are in high demand across various industries. The current programs ensure that students not only gain a strong solid statistical foundation but also proficiency in the essential tools, programming languages, and statistical techniques employed in the field of data science. The programs will provide students with a competitive edge in the job market and enable them to thrive in diverse data-centric roles. Furthermore, this evolution aligns the Applied Statistics and Data Science undergraduate and graduate programs with industry demands and ensures that graduates are well-prepared to address real-world challenges using advanced statistical methods and data science techniques.
ISRT boasts an academic environment that is highly competitive and conducive to research. Both students and faculty members benefit from the regular seminars and talks given by researchers from home and abroad on topics of current interest. The Institute has a rich library with well over 15,000 books and is equipped with three state-of-the-art computer labs and high-speed internet access for graduate and undergraduate students. The aim is to provide a learning environment that stimulates intellectual curiosity, critical thinking, and independent problem-solving skills. The Journal of Statistical Research (JSR), which is an international journal that has been published bi-annually by ISRT since 1970, serves as a forum for the exchange of research ideas between statisticians in Bangladesh and abroad. Faculty members conduct research in diverse areas such as biostatistics, spatial statistics, statistical machine learning, statistical pattern recognition, Bayesian analysis, and econometrics and regularly publish in peer-reviewed journals.
Among its other activities, the Institute frequently organizes short courses and training programs for non-statisticians in government and non-government organizations who find themselves using statistics in their work. In doing so, it has played an active role in promoting and creating awareness about the need for sound statistical practices among people from other disciplines so that they may work more efficiently within their organizations. ISRT also maintains close ties with the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics and other organizations responsible for the collection and dissemination of statistical data in Bangladesh and is frequently called upon to offer its expertise on statistical issues of national interest.
Every year, students as well as faculty members from the Institute receive awards from the Faculty of Science, University of Dhaka in recognition of their high academic achievements and research excellence. Over the years the Institute has played a significant role in the country’s development by producing world-class statisticians for academia and industry in addition to providing statistical expertise on issues of national interest. ISRT is proud of its graduates who have enjoyed successful careers in academia, industry, and government organizations both at home and abroad. ISRT organized its first-ever reunion on 22 August 2014 and its first-ever International Conference on Applied Statistics (ICAS2014) on 27-29 December 2014, The second ICAS took place on December 27-29, 2019. Both events were organized to mark the 50th anniversary of the founding of the Institute. ISRT and ISRT alumni association jointly organized the first alumni reunion on 27 January 2018.
The vision of the institute is to take a leading position globally for providing quality education in Applied Statistics and Data Science, conducting leading-edge research, and creating innovative industrial partnerships.
The mission of the institute is to produce competent graduates in Applied Statistics and Data Science equipped with the skills necessary for success in a technological society and competitive global environment so as to fulfill the statistical and data science demands of the nation and the world at large.
Objectives: To fulfill the vision and missions, ISRT aims to
(i) Strengthen and update various teaching and training programs at undergraduate, postgraduate, and doctoral levels so as to produce graduates with strong theoretical and practical knowledge of Statistics and Data Science in line with the labor market requirements.
(ii) Create an environment conducive to high-quality research in relevant fields.
(iii) Contribute to the advancement of science and technology through interdisciplinary research, jointly with scientists, scholars at the University of Dhaka, and other research institutions at home and abroad.
(iv) Contribute to the statistics and data science professions and to the larger scientiﬁc community by running quality statistical journals and serving on editorial boards, review panels, and administrative and advisory committees.
(v) Employ high-quality faculty members with diverse research interests.
(vi) Promote the exchange of knowledge and ideas by arranging invited talks on a regular basis in addition to workshops and international conferences.
(vii) Disseminate statistical, programming and data science knowledge by oﬀering training programs to students of other departments and professionals of various government and private organizations.
(viii) Serve the statistical and data science needs of the University and national bodies by providing consulting services in research, government, business, and industry.
(ix) Produce graduates having strong moral and ethical values, respect for local norms and culture, and exceptional leadership qualities.