Economics and statistics are among the most popular degree courses in Kenya. It’s, however, important to note that one of them is more marketable and widely accepted in Kenyan job market. We discuss the most preferred degree course between Economics and Statistics.
You can either study applied statistics, general statistics or biostatistics, but both courses are classified as “statistics”
If you compare a degree in statistics and economics, you will find that statistics is way better than the latter because graduates secure employment faster and with good renumeration.
While graduates with economics sweat to earn at least Ksh 50, 000, the starting salary of a statistician in Kenya is Ksh 70,000.
People with a degree in statistics can be employed as research analysts, M&E, economists, data analysts, accountants, investment analysts, biostatisticians, data managers etc, but economists have limited options unless they pursue professional courses like CPA and CFA.
Economics is highly flooded in Kenya. It is estimated that over 3,000 people graduate with a degree in economics annually from local universities. Statistics on the other hand has numerous opportunities. Only less than 1,000 Kenyans graduate with a degree in statistics annually from local universities. It is reported that most economists end up as sales executives or insurance financial advisors because they have no option.
If you are keen to read job blogs and news papers, you will notice that there are more jobs for statisticians than any other degree course in the country, yet there are few statistics graduates.
At undergraduate level, statistics is more superior to economics but at PhD level, economists tend to earn more than statisticians and they are more respected.Most economists with PhD earn above Ksh 600,000 while Statisticians with PhD earn Ksh250,000-Ksh400,000.
Another thing to note is that at undergraduate level, there are colleges which offer Economics and statistics as one course. This is where I would advise anyone intending to study economics to be. A combination is more appreciated than economics alone.