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Discover biostatistics at the University of Sydney

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Overview

In response to COVID-19, the University of Sydney has reviewed the availability of courses to be delivered remotely for students commencing their studies in Semester 1, 2021.

This course will be available to study remotely for students commencing in Semester 1, 2021. Please note that some units of study that are not essential to completing the degree may not be available to be studied remotely.

Note: The University intends to offer as many units of study as possible in a remote as well as face-to-face learning method of delivery in Semester 1, 2021 and subject to ongoing border closures and public health orders impacting attendance on campus, in Semester 2, 2021. However, some units of study and courses require students to study in-person at the relevant University of Sydney campus/es and host locations for placements and will not be available remotely. 

About this course

Biostatistics is the application of statistical techniques to scientific research in health-related fields, including medicine and public health.

Biostatisticians play an essential role in designing research studies, managing and analysing data, interpreting the results, as well as developing new approaches and methods to analysing data.

Biostatistics can be used to show the most effective treatment, discover or isolate factors in the spread of diseases, or determine risk factors in genetic inheritance and mutation.

Why study biostatistics with us?

  • 100% online course delivery - this course is offered through our interactive online learning environment, giving you the flexibility to tailor your study schedule around your lifestyle. We also offer full-time and part-time options, allowing you to decide your study load.

  • First-class teaching - our biostatistics programs are offered in alliance with the Biostatistics Collaboration of Australia, a consortium of biostatistical experts from around Australia, with representatives from universities, government and the health industry. Our units of study are taught by experienced academic biostatisticians based in universities around Australia. The Collaboration has recently received the President's Award for Leadership in Statistics from the Statistical Society of Australia.
  • In-depth knowledge and advanced methods - learn how to design research studies in health and medicine e.g. randomised controlled trials. Learn the theory of, as well as how to apply standard and advanced state-of-art statistical methods used in biostatistics. Topics include data management, statistical computing, methods for analysing different types of data, including continuous data, categorical data, survival/time-to-event data, longitudinal/correlated data, bioinformatics and genomics.
  • Unique electives - we offer unique electives compared to other universities, such as how to analyse linked data and health economics.

Who should study this course?

Our biostatistics programs are designed for someone who:

  • has a degree from a relevant discipline (maths/statistics or a qualification in medicine, health or science)
  • has an aptitude for mathematics
  • has successfully completed an introductory course in statistics or biostatistics.

Subject areas

There are no specialisations for this course.

Shared pool

Entry, fees, funding & how to apply

Depends on your qualification, citizenship status
The details on this page based on your selections are a guide only, and are subject to change.

Your admission criteria

English language proficiency

Find out if you need to prove English language proficiency (depends on your country of origin and educational background).

For academic requirements check the ‘Admission criteria’ section on this page.

Your fee

Scholarships

We’ve relaunched our scholarships program and offer a variety of postgraduate coursework scholarships for both domestic and international students.

Criteria, eligibility and application deadlines vary. Check the scholarships website or contact the school directly for more information.

We’ve relaunched our scholarships program and offer a variety of postgraduate coursework scholarships for both domestic and international students.

Criteria, eligibility and application deadlines vary. Check the scholarships website or contact the school directly for more information.

How to apply

You can apply online via the application portal. When you are ready to apply, select the ‘Apply’ button on this course page. Visit the How to apply page for other important information. 

*As part of your application you will be required to submit a completed `Student Contact, Choice of Units of Study & Credits/Waivers form for the Biostatistics Collaboration of Australia (BCA).

 

Standard closing dates:

Semester 1 - 11 February of the commencing year

Semester 2 - 15 July of the commencing year

We strongly encourage applicants to apply as early as possible, offers are made on a rolling basis and places are limited. Separate scholarship deadlines apply - check the scholarships website for details.

Starting date

Semester 1 (March) and Semester 2 (August)

International Students are able to apply for this degree, however it is not open to ESOS visa holders. The course is open to international passport holders in Australia on working visas and for offshore students.

You can apply online via the application portal. When you are ready to apply, select the ‘Apply’ button on this course page. Visit the How to apply page for other important information. 

*As part of your application you will be required to submit a completed `Student Contact, Choice of Units of Study & Credits/Waivers form for the Biostatistics Collaboration of Australia (BCA).

 

Standard closing dates:

Semester 1 - 31 January of the commencing year

Semester 2 - 30 June of the commencing year

We strongly encourage international applicants to apply as early as possible to allow time for visa and travel arrangements. Separate scholarship deadlines may apply - check the scholarships website for details.

Starting date

Semester 1 (March) and Semester 2 (August)

Course structure

View a suggested Biostatistics course structure (pdf, 70KB).

What you'll study

The biostatistics program is offered at three award levels graduate certificategraduate diploma and master's degree.  Completion of either the graduate certificate or graduate diploma programs can be used as credit towards the Master of Biostatistics degree.

The Graduate Diploma in Biostatistics is a two-year part-time course which consists of 48 credit points, including the core units PUBH5010 (semester 1) or BSTA5011 (semester 2), BSTA5001, BSTA5002, BSTA5004, BSTA5006, BSTA5007, BSTA5008 and BSTA5023. One or more of these units may be waived, leaving room for elective units of study.

The biostatistics units of study are predominantly delivered online. The only units of study which are not available online are:

  • PUBH5215 Introductory Analysis of Linked Data (5-day workshop)
  • PUBH5312 Health Economic Evaluation (on-line components and 4 non-consecutive workshop days)
  • The biostatistics research projects (BSTA5020, BSTA5021 or BSTA5022).

A complete list of available units of study with their pre-requisites and co-requisites is here.

Some suggested study schedules are available here.

Units of Study

Admission criteria

A successful applicant for admission to the Graduate Diploma in Biostatistics will:

(a) hold a bachelor's degree in statistics, mathematics, science, psychology, medicine, pharmacy, economics, health sciences or other appropriate discipline from the University of Sydney or equivalent qualification; and

(b) have a proven aptitude for advanced mathematical work - indicated, for example, by a high level of achievement in high school or undergraduate mathematics; and

(c) have already passed an introductory course in statistics 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).

Note that this course must be separately and formally assessed, and that the amount and level of statistics covered in the usual medical degree is not sufficient to meet this criterion. In exceptional circumstances the dean may admit applicants without this qualification who, in the opinion of the school, have qualifications and evidence of experience and achievement sufficient to successfully undertake the award.

As part of your application you will be required to submit a completed `Student Contact, Choice of Units of Study & Credits/Waivers form for the Biostatistics Collaboration of Australia (BCA).

Course options

Completion of either the graduate certificate or graduate diploma programs can be used as credit towards the Master of Biostatistics degree.

Related courses

The content in our biostatistics units of study are both theoretical and applied. If you would prefer to study biostatistics at an applied but less theoretical/mathematical level, you may wish to consider the following:

Professional accreditation

The graduate diploma and masters program are accredited with the Statistical Society of Australia.

Future study options

Completion of this Graduate Diploma program can be used as credit towards a Masters degree.

Career Pathways

The Graduate Diploma in Biostatistics will provide you with advanced biostatistical training ensuring that you are well placed to obtain employment in a wide range of health, pharmaceutical, university, government and non-government organisations.

If you are already working as a biostatistician, then study at postgraduate level will enhance your career development opportunities.

Domestic students

International students

To help you understand common terms that we use at the University, we offer an online glossary.