I recently finished my Masters in Mathematics, more incline to analysis and algebra.

I do not know if I should blame my school for laying a poor foundation in statistics or I should blame myself for avoiding it completely all the while till date (I have not done any course work on it). I am absolutely zero in Statistics, and presently for a competitive exam I am suppose to write in two months (CSIR-UGC NET Examination), $1/4^{th}$ of the questions are from Stats (Other 3/4th portion includes analysis, algebra and differential equations).

Can someone suggest a good book which like "Schaum's Outline for Linear Algebra" (I found it a good self contained book, with bare minimum facts required for survival for newbies, and I use it to revise what I studied in past) for statistics?

I came to know about "Schaum's Outline of Statistics" and it is priced very high here in India, and I don't know if it is worth the money. There are other Schaum's Outline books as well for statistics but I do not know which one to buy. I did go through similar posts and checked out the suggestions there, but they are proper complete text books.

Can someone suggest some good book(s) for statistics, starting from zero, concise with material up to Masters (or at least undergraduate) syllabus?

Thanks in advance.

  • $\begingroup$ I feel like Shaum's is a bit too easy for someone with a Masters degree and background in analysis and algebra. $\endgroup$
    – JessicaK
    Apr 16, 2015 at 15:31
  • $\begingroup$ @JessicaK, any other suggestions? I have done not even single course on probability-statistics, and do not even know the basics! $\endgroup$ Apr 16, 2015 at 15:39
  • $\begingroup$ Just for the record, it seems that students in mathematics do not need to write the statistics portion of the exam. See csirhrdg.res.in/mcs_ma_sylbs.pdf $\endgroup$
    – Bib
    Apr 16, 2015 at 15:52
  • $\begingroup$ Not Schaum, but a very good stats book is "Introduction to Probability Theory and Statistical Inference" by Harold J. Larson if you can get it (library maybe). Excellent if you know no stats. $\endgroup$
    – Paul
    Apr 16, 2015 at 15:56
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ math.stackexchange.com/q/51785/321264 $\endgroup$ Dec 27, 2020 at 15:54

1 Answer 1


For a book which contains lots of information with respect to probability and statistics, try Probability and Statistical Inference by Hogg and Tanis. I'm not sure how its price is in India, but it contains loads of information on multifarious topics, as well as no shortage of exercises. I used it for two classes in probability and statistics, and found it quite handy, so I think it is a fine starting point. If I remember correctly, it's also suggested in the syllabus for the actuarial exam in probability in the USA.

On other, more specialized topics that I saw in your syllabus, I'm not too sure. It seems like one could study an entire degree (or more!) on the material mentioned.

In particular, if you're interested in surveys and sampling, Statistics Canada has suggested reading for its candidates for employment in mathematical statistics positions. http://www.statcan.gc.ca/employment-emploi/recruit-recrue/ma/readings-lectures-eng.htm

  • $\begingroup$ thank you! :) Will definitely check it out! $\endgroup$ Apr 17, 2015 at 5:07

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