Mathematics Background for Biostatistics (BSTA5001)


The aim of this unit is to provide students with the mathematics required for studying biostatistics at a more rigorous level. On completion of this unit students should be able to follow the mathematical demonstrations and proofs used in biostatistics at Masters degree level, and to understand the mathematics behind statistical methods introduced at that level. The intention is to allow students to concentrate on statistical concepts in subsequent units, and not be distracted by the mathematics employed. Content: basic algebra and analysis; exponential functions; calculus; series, limits, approximations and expansions; linear algebra, matrices and determinants; numerical methods.

Our courses that offer this unit of study

Further unit of study information


8-12 hours total study time per week, distance learning


3x assignments (20%, 40% and 40%)


Compulsory: 1) Anton H, Bivens I, Davis S. Calculus: early transcendentals combined, 10th edition. Wiley, 2012. ISBN 978-0-470-64769-1. 2) Anton, Howard. Elementary Linear Algebra. 10th edition, Wiley 2010. Recommended reference book (not compulsory): Healy, MJR. Matrices for Statistics, 2nd edition. Oxford University Press, 2000, ISBN 978-0-470-45821-1. Notes supplied.

Faculty/department permission required?


Study this unit outside a degree

Non-award/non-degree study

If you wish to undertake one or more units of study (subjects) for your own interest but not towards a degree, you may enrol in single units as a non-award student.

Cross-institutional study

If you are from another Australian tertiary institution you may be permitted to underake cross-institutional study in one or more units of study at the University of Sydney.