Introductory Biostatistics (PUBH5018)


This unit aims to provide students with an introduction to statistical concepts, their use and relevance in public health. This unit covers descriptive analyses to summarise and display data; concepts underlying statistical inference; basic statistical methods for the analysis of continuous and binary data; and statistical aspects of study design. Specific topics include: sampling; probability distributions; sampling distribution of the mean; confidence interval and significance tests for one-sample, two paired samples and two independent samples for continuous data and also binary data; correlation and simple linear regression; distribution-free methods for two paired samples, two independent samples and correlation; power and sample size estimation for simple studies; statistical aspects of study design and analysis. Students will be required to perform analyses using a calculator and will also be required to conduct analyses using statistical software (SPSS). It is expected that students spend an additional 2 hours per week preparing for their tutorials. Computing tasks are self-directed.

Further unit of study information


2 x 2hr lecture, 10 x 1hr lectures, 11 x 2hr tutorials, 2 x 1hr and 8 x 0.5hr statistical computing self directed learning tasks over 12 weeks - lectures and tutorials may be completed online


1x4 page assignment (30%) and 1x2.5hr open-book exam (70%). For distance students it may be possible to complete the exam externally with the approval of the course coordinator.


Course notes are provided.

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.