Jobs that Use Theoretical Probability

Although theoretical probability involves mathematical calculations, there are a number of careers outside of the mathematical field that involve using theoretical probability. Some of those occupations are explored further here.

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Career Options that Involve Using Theoretical Probability

Theoretical probability refers to how likely something is to occur based on every possible outcome. It may be important to use theoretical probability in a range of careers, because the likelihood of relevant factors occurring may impact costs or affect specific actions a company takes. Careers in business, life sciences and education can involve using theoretical probability.

Job Title Median Salary* (2016) Growth* (2014-2024)
Statistician $80,500 34%
Cost Estimator $61,790 9%
Insurance Underwriter $67,680 -11% (decline)
Postsecondary Math Teacher $69,520 16%
Market Research Analyst $62,560 19%
Atmospheric Scientists $92,460 9%

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Career Information for Occupations that Involve Using Theoretical Probability

Statistician

Statisticians gather data and perform computations and analysis with the goal of determining how to solve problems or address specific issues. Some statisticians may specialize in an area such as healthcare and use theoretical probability to determine how many people are likely to contract a contagious illness or how effective a medication will be at treating an illness. They can work in all types of industries, from government to finance to scientific research. Statisticians must have a master's degree at minimum for most jobs, and they usually study mathematics or a similar subject to prepare for this career.

Cost Estimator

Cost estimators prepare estimates for the total cost of a project. They need a bachelor's degree, and construction experience can be an asset for those working in the building industry. While some of the variables they consider involve straightforward computations, such as the number of hours of labor expected multiplied by the number of staff working the job added to the cost of materials, others involve using theoretical probability. Cost estimators must consider factors such as how likely a project is to experience delays due to things like bad weather. Theoretical probability may be used to determine how likely it is that there will be a delay receiving supplies or that there may be storm damage during construction, and this information is factored in when developing a final estimate for the project.

Insurance Underwriter

Insurance underwriters use theoretical probability to determine how likely it is that certain risks will occur. For example, they may determine that an elderly patient is more likely to have a medical crisis, or that a new driver is more likely to have an accident. They use theoretical probability to determine whether or not to offer insurance policies to clients. They can also set policy terms. Insurance underwriters normally need a bachelor's degree, and certification may be needed for advancement.

Postsecondary Math Teacher

Postsecondary math teachers teach math classes at colleges and universities. They may teach theoretical probability to their students, which involves using examples and demonstrating how theoretical probability is determined. While it's common for postsecondary teachers to need a doctoral degree, some entry-level positions may only require a master's degree. Postsecondary teachers prepare lesson plans, teach classes, and grade student work. They may also be involved in research, during which they'd also apply their knowledge of theoretical probability.

Market Research Analyst

Market research analysts specialize in determining whether or not to sell a product, how it should be priced and what types of customers it should be marketed towards. This involves collecting information and analyzing it, as well as factoring in other considerations that may affect a product's success. They may use theoretical probability to determine how likely it is that a similar service or product will be offered by a rival company or how likely it is that economic variables may affect consumer purchases. They incorporate this information into their recommendations about potential merchandise their employer is considering manufacturing, or services they may want to offer. A bachelor's degree is the minimum requirement to work in this field; a master's degree may be necessary for senior positions.

Atmospheric Scientists

With a bachelor's degree in meteorology, it's possible to become an atmospheric scientist. These professionals may be involved in measuring information about the earth's weather and other atmospheric conditions; they may also forecast the weather after reviewing weather-related data. Theoretical probability can play an important role in an atmospheric scientist's work, particularly when developing weather forecasts, because they need to consider a number of variables to determine how likely it is that something will occur. For example, they may assess conditions and decide how likely it is that it will snow, or that there will be a life-threatening weather event, such as a tornado or hurricane.

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