SAS Back to School Guide for Students (Faculty and Admins, too!)


SAS Back to School GuideIt’s that time of year—time to get your rear in gear! The start of a new semester can be overwhelming—new books, new subjects—but we’re making it easy to learn SAS, with loads of available resources.

Below is a guide to some of the most common inquiries we get from students and teachers on getting started using and learning SAS. I’ve broken them out so you can skip to the most relevant information depending on where you are in your SAS studies!

What is SAS, and what does SAS stand for?

SAS is a leading provider of business analytics software and services. S-A-S originally stood for Statistical Analysis Systems, however now that SAS (pronounced "sass") develops more than just statistical software, it is more of a brand than an acronym. Find out more about SAS.

How can I get access to SAS software?

There are several options for students looking for access to SAS software. Each provides access to a unique bundle of SAS products. The first two are free: SAS University Edition and SAS OnDemand for Academics (cloud-based). The third option is to obtain a license from your university (if they offer one) at special academic pricing. This is typically called the Education Analytical Suite. This comparison chart will help you determine which option might work best for you. You can also find more information on obtaining a license and getting started using SAS in Part II of this Back to School Guide.

Which operating systems do these options run on?

SAS University Edition runs on an OS, Linux and Windows. SAS OnDemand for Academics is cloud-based, so to access SAS Studio all you really need a browser! See requirements to access additional applications.

If you obtain a license from your university, you can find supported operating systems here. You can also run that option on a Mac through Apple Boot Camp software.

Where can I find sample data?

If you’re in need of sample data for teaching or learning, you can find a plethora of data in our Analytics U Community Data Library!

Which SAS course(s) should I start with if I’m new to SAS?

If you’re new to SAS, SAS offers two free e-Learning courses that are great to start with:

Did you know: If your school has a license for the Education Analytical Suite, students, faculty and admins have access to additional free SAS e-Learning courses through your university! Contact your on-site SAS representative, or us here at SAS for information how to access those training courses!

Are there academic discounts available?

Yes! As a student, faculty or staff member, you are eligible for academic discounts on SAS training courses and certifications (50% off) as well as books (20% off)! Remember, you’ll want to request the discount voucher for certification exams, or for books, prior to registering or placing your order.

If you need some book recommendations, here’s a list of recommended books for getting started.

Faculty: If you’re considering a SAS title for your classroom, you can request evaluation copies of up to two titles a semester for review (free).

Does SAS offer additional teaching resources for instructors?

Yes! You can find a multitude of teaching resources from workshops, to free books, to instructor notes, course data sets, practice exercises and more!

How can I get SAS certified?

If you’re interested in getting certified, our SAS Global Certification program page has all the information you need. Once you’ve found a certification of interest, you’ll find exam preparation materials, including recommended training courses, books, sample questions and/or practice exams, registration and exam content information.

You can search for nearby test centers here. Most sites offer all, or the majority, of available exams.

Why should I learn SAS or get certified?

SAS is used at more than 80,000 sites across the world and in just about every industry. A recent study even confirmed SAS as the most valuable career skill! Need more encouragement? Here are the Top 10 reasons to get SAS certified.

Which institutions offer a master program with a SAS focus?

You can find a list of schools which offer a master program with a SAS focus here. If you are interested in starting your own, please contact

How do I cite SAS?

If you’re referring to SAS and its products and services, or referencing data analysis you performed with SAS software in your paper, please review our editorial guidelines for citing SAS!

Where can I find help with my SAS programs?

Our Analytics U community is a great place to connect with others in academia. Join the community to ask questions, start conversations or just follow the discussion threads. These forums are also monitored by SAS specialists who can help with usage questions.

This blog, Generation SAS, is also specifically designed for students and professors. Visit often or subscribe using the subscription box you’ll find in the right-hand column of this page.

Can I attend SAS events?

Absolutely! Serious about data science and interested in attending a SAS event? Register for the annual Analytics Experience conference. This year’s event takes place September 12-14 in Las Vegas and is FREE for full-time students! Academia (professors/faculty) can receive 50% off. You’re also eligible for discounts on SAS training and certification at the event! Check out this post on how to get involved in the upcoming event!

Does SAS offer internships?

Yes! SAS offers year-round and summer internships. We also offer fellowships, as well as the SAS Academy program. The SAS Academy is a US-based training program, open to recent graduates and available in sales or technical enablement. You can find more information here.

Tip: Using ‘Student’ in the keyword field during your search may help narrow results!

What other programs and recognition opportunities does SAS offer for academia?

SAS offers several recognition opportunities for academia, including:

More information.

What about K-12?

SAS Curriculum Pathways provides free, web-based learning resources for K-12 in all core disciplines. Sign up and find apps, lessons and other tools.

You can also learn more about other academic initiatives, including K-12 and beyond.

Don’t forget to check out Part II of this Back to School Guide for more information on other ways SAS can help in your pursuit of learning!


About Author

Tricia Jenkins

Tricia is a Business Operations Specialist at SAS Software. In her current role, she has the opportunity to interact with SAS users across the globe on a daily basis through a variety of channels, including social media—140 characters may not sound like much, but they sure keep this girl busy!

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