Biostatistics - Essential Information for applicants

Biostatistics is the use of statistical methods in a health or medical context, such as for evaluating the benefits of a new treatment. At a deeper level, biostatistics involves using highly sophisticated mathematical models to evaluate public health data, such as analysing a long-term study of a large group of people in a way that allows for all the complications in the data that arise over that time. For those who are interested in this deeper level of biostatistics, with a view to a career as a biostatistician, we offer a program of specialist biostatistics courses.

The biostatistics programs are designed to provide advanced biostatistical training for a diverse range of students. If you are interested in enrolling in a biostatistics coursework program in the Sydney School of Public Health, the main thing is that you should have an aptitude for advanced mathematics, and a desire to learn biostatistics.

The School offers the following coursework programs:

Here you will find information about the content and structure of the coursework programs offered in the field of biostatistics.

Who is eligible to apply?

The biostatistics program is available to all students regardless of their location. However, off-shore students are required to apply initially for the Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate before upgrading to the Masters. The upgrade is dependent on making suitable arrangements for supervision of the workplace project(s). As an off-shore international student, you will be studying for your degree in your own country. It is not possible to complete these courses as an international student in Australia


To do one of the courses you should have:

  • a Bachelor degree in statistics, mathematics, science, psychology, medicine, pharmacy, economics, health sciences or other appropriate discipline from an approved university (or equivalent qualification)
  • a proven aptitude for advanced mathematical work, indicated for example by a high level of achievement in high school or undergraduate mathematics, and
  • already passed an introductory course in statistics, such as Introductory Biostatistics, covering at least the estimation of means and proportions with confidence intervals, and the comparison of means and proportions between two groups using hypothesis tests (i.e. t-tests and chi-squared tests for 2x2 tables).
Biostatistics Graduands

Biostatistics students and Professor Judy Simpson, 2009 Graduation