Mathematical Background for Biostatistics

10 Units

Covers the necessary mathematical background to understand the key techniques in biostatistics. This course is offered in conjunction with the Biostatistics Collaboration of Australia (BCA).

Faculty Faculty of Health and Medicine
School School of Medicine and Public Health
Availability Semester 1 - 2014 (Distance Education - Callaghan)
Semester 2 - 2014 (Distance Education - Callaghan)

Previously offered in 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004


Upon completion of this course, students should be able to:

  1. Demonstrate a broad understanding of the mathematics underlying key statistical methods
  2. Demonstrate an understanding of basic algebra and analysis, and the ability to manually differentiate and integrate algebraic expressions, and perform Taylor series expansions
  3. Understand the calculus basis of expectation and distribution theory
  4. Perform matrix manipulations manually or by using software
  5. Understand the numerical methods behind solutions of equations regularly encountered in methods in biostatistics

This course covers core topics in algebra and analysis, including polynomial and simultaneous equations, graphs, the concept of limits, continuity and series approximations, including Taylor series expansions. Calculus will be introduced describing the techniques of integration and differentiation of vector expressions. This will be integrated into a study of probability, where the concepts of probability laws, random variables, expectation and distributions will be introduced. Essential topics in matrix algebra relevant to biostatistical methods will be presented. Finally, essential numerical methods, including the Newton-Raphson method for solution of simultaneous equations and concepts of numerical integration will be introduced.

Replacing Course(s) N/A
Transition N/A
Industrial Experience 0
Assumed Knowledge None
Modes of Delivery Distance Learning : Paper Based
Teaching Methods Email Discussion Group
Assessment Items
  • Essays / Written Assignments - Assignments 100% (3 written assignments: functions [20%] calculus [40%] and matrices and numerical methods [40%])
Contact Hours
  • Self Directed Learning: for 6 hour(s) per Week for Full Term
Compulsory Components
  • Requisite by Enrolment: This course is only available to students enrolled in the Graduate Diploma in Medical Statistics or Master of Medical Statistics programs.
Course Materials None listed
Timetable 2014 Course Timetables for BIOS6040

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