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Unit of study_

ENVX2001: Applied Statistical Methods

Semester 1, 2024 [Normal day] - Camperdown/Darlington, Sydney

This unit builds on introductory 1st year statistics units and is targeted towards students in the agricultural, life and environmental sciences. It consists of two parts and presents, in an applied manner, the statistical methods that students need to know for further study and their future careers. In the first part the focus is on designed studies including both surveys and formal experimental designs. Students will learn how to analyse and interpret datasets collected from designs from more than 2 treatment levels, multiple factors and different blocking designs. In the second part the focus is on finding patterns in data. In this part the students will learn to model relationships between response and predictor variables using regression, and find patterns in datasets with many variables using principal components analysis and clustering. This part provides the foundation for the analysis of big data. In the practicals the emphasis is on applying theory to analysing real datasets using the statistical software package R. A key feature of the unit is using R to develop coding skills that have become essential in science for processing and analysing datasets of ever-increasing size.

Unit details and rules

Unit code ENVX2001
Academic unit Life and Environmental Sciences Academic Operations
Credit points 6
[6cp from (ENVX1001 or ENVX1002 or BIOM1003 or MATH1011 or MATH1015 or DATA1001 or DATA1901)] OR [3cp from (MATH1XX1 or MATH1906 or MATH1XX3 or MATH1907) and an additional 3cp from (MATH1XX5)]
Assumed knowledge


Available to study abroad and exchange students


Teaching staff

Coordinator Aaron Greenville,
Lecturer(s) Floris Van Ogtrop,
Aaron Greenville,
Liana Pozza,
Mathew Crowther,
Januar Harianto,
Type Description Weight Due Length
Supervised exam
Final exam
Timed MCQ + Short answer exam
45% Formal exam period 2 hours
Outcomes assessed: LO2 LO5 LO6
Assignment Project 1: Describing data
Individual written report
10% Week 05
Due date: 18 Mar 2024 at 23:59
See Canvas for details
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO2 LO3
Assignment Project 2: Analysing experimental data
Individual written report
20% Week 10
Due date: 29 Apr 2024 at 23:59
See canvas for details
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO7 LO6 LO5 LO3 LO2
Presentation group assignment Project 3: Presentation - Topics 7-12
Powerpoint Audio presentation + individual reflection
20% Week 13 5 minutes. See Canvas for more details
Outcomes assessed: LO3 LO4 LO5 LO6
Online task Online quizzes
Quizzes are completed in Canvas
5% Weekly 120 minutes
Outcomes assessed: LO1 LO5 LO4 LO3 LO2
group assignment = group assignment ?

Assessment summary

  • Topics 1-6: There will be 2 individual report. The report details will be released via Canvas.
  • Topics 7-12: There will be a group presentation involving a modelling exercise integrating all Topics in Module 2. Groups will collect datasets.The report details will be released via Canvas
  • Online quizzes: There will be weekly online multiple choice quizzes that will be assessed during the semester. The questions will be taken from the output in the practical classes and the analysis of example datasets. The questions should be seen as practice for the final exam and multiple attempts will be allowed. They will be released on Friday at 5pm and be due by the following Wednesday 11pm. Two hours will be given to complete the online quizzes.
  • Final exam: will cover key concepts learnt throughout semester.  Note: This assessment is compulsory and failure to attend, attempt, or submit will result in the award of an AF grade. If a second replacement exam is required, this exam may be delivered via an alternative assessment method, such as a viva voce (oral exam). The alternative assessment will meet the same learning outcomes as the original exam. The format of the alternative assessment will be determined by the unit coordinator.

Detailed information for each assessment can be found on Canvas.

Assessment criteria

The University awards common result grades, set out in the Coursework Policy 2014 (Schedule 1).

As a general guide, a high distinction indicates work of an exceptional standard, a distinction a very high standard, a credit a good standard, and a pass an acceptable standard.

Result name

Mark range


High distinction

85 - 100

Able to write a coherent and flowing report in good English. Using a variety of viewpoints to argue the process for identifying the problem.  Excellent discussion of management strategies to manage this problem.  References are used wisely and the student shows an ability to critique the literature.  Sources included at least three refereed journal articles and these were presented in the correct format in the reference list and using the correct in text citation.


75 - 84

Able to write a coherent report in good English. Presented at least two points of view to argue the process for identifying the problem. Good discussion of management strategies to manage this problem.  Sources included at least three refereed journal articles and these were presented in the correct format in the reference list and using the correct in text citation.


65 - 74

Presented a report in good English.   Presented at least two points of view to argue the process for identifying the problem.  Reasonable discussion of management strategies to manage this problem. Sources included at least two refereed journal articles and these were presented in the correct format in the reference list and using the correct in text citation.


50 - 64

Presented and report in good English that defined the problem and came to a recommendation. Sources included two refereed journal articles, in a reference list.


0 - 49

When you don’t meet the learning outcomes of the unit to a satisfactory standard. Presented a report that did not address the problem or was poorly constructed and grammatically incorrect. Did not provide any recommendations. Did not use any refereed journal papers. 

For more information see

For more information see guide to grades.

Late submission

In accordance with University policy, these penalties apply when written work is submitted after 11:59pm on the due date:

  • Deduction of 5% of the maximum mark for each calendar day after the due date.
  • After ten calendar days late, a mark of zero will be awarded.

Academic integrity

The Current Student website  provides information on academic integrity and the resources available to all students. The University expects students and staff to act ethically and honestly and will treat all allegations of academic integrity breaches seriously.  

We use similarity detection software to detect potential instances of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breach. If such matches indicate evidence of plagiarism or other forms of academic integrity breaches, your teacher is required to report your work for further investigation.

You may only use artificial intelligence and writing assistance tools in assessment tasks if you are permitted to by your unit coordinator, and if you do use them, you must also acknowledge this in your work, either in a footnote or an acknowledgement section.

Studiosity is permitted for postgraduate units unless otherwise indicated by the unit coordinator. The use of this service must be acknowledged in your submission.

Simple extensions

If you encounter a problem submitting your work on time, you may be able to apply for an extension of five calendar days through a simple extension.  The application process will be different depending on the type of assessment and extensions cannot be granted for some assessment types like exams.

Special consideration

If exceptional circumstances mean you can’t complete an assessment, you need consideration for a longer period of time, or if you have essential commitments which impact your performance in an assessment, you may be eligible for special consideration or special arrangements.

Special consideration applications will not be affected by a simple extension application.

Using AI responsibly

Co-created with students, AI in Education includes lots of helpful examples of how students use generative AI tools to support their learning. It explains how generative AI works, the different tools available and how to use them responsibly and productively.

Support for students

The Support for Students Policy 2023 reflects the University’s commitment to supporting students in their academic journey and making the University safe for students. It is important that you read and understand this policy so that you are familiar with the range of support services available to you and understand how to engage with them.

The University uses email as its primary source of communication with students who need support under the Support for Students Policy 2023. Make sure you check your University email regularly and respond to any communications received from the University.

Learning resources and detailed information about weekly assessment and learning activities can be accessed via Canvas. It is essential that you visit your unit of study Canvas site to ensure you are up to date with all of your tasks.

If you are having difficulties completing your studies, or are feeling unsure about your progress, we are here to help. You can access the support services offered by the University at any time:

Support and Services (including health and wellbeing services, financial support and learning support)
Course planning and administration
Meet with an Academic Adviser

WK Topic Learning activity Learning outcomes
Week 01 Introduction Lecture and tutorial (5 hr) LO6 LO7
Week 02 Sampling designs Lecture and tutorial (5 hr) LO1
Week 03 1-way ANOVA Lecture and tutorial (5 hr) LO3 LO5
Week 04 Residual diagnostics & post hoc tests Lecture and tutorial (5 hr) LO3 LO5
Week 05 Experimental design Lecture and tutorial (5 hr) LO2 LO3 LO5
Week 06 ANOVA with blocking Lecture and tutorial (5 hr) LO2 LO3 LO5
Week 07 Regression modelling Lecture and tutorial (5 hr) LO3 LO4 LO5
Week 08 Regression model development Lecture and tutorial (5 hr) LO3 LO4 LO5
Week 09 Regression model assessment Lecture and tutorial (5 hr) LO3 LO4 LO5
Week 10 Principle component analysis Lecture and tutorial (5 hr) LO3 LO4 LO5
Week 11 Clustering Lecture and tutorial (5 hr) LO3 LO4 LO5
Week 12 Multidimensional scaling Lecture and tutorial (5 hr) LO3 LO4 LO5
Week 13 Revision Lecture and tutorial (5 hr)  

Attendance and class requirements

Under the Faculty of Science Resolutions (Policy):

(1) Students are expected to attend at least 80% of timetabled activities as defined in the unit of study outline, unless granted exemption by the Associate Dean.

(2) A student may fail a unit of study because of inadequate attendance

Study commitment

Typically, there is a minimum expectation of 1.5-2 hours of student effort per week per credit point for units of study offered over a full semester. For a 6 credit point unit, this equates to roughly 120-150 hours of student effort in total.

Learning outcomes are what students know, understand and are able to do on completion of a unit of study. They are aligned with the University's graduate qualities and are assessed as part of the curriculum.

At the completion of this unit, you should be able to:

  • LO1. demonstrate proficiency in designing sample schemes and analysing data from them using using R
  • LO2. describe and identify the basic features of an experimental design; replicate, treatment structure and blocking structure
  • LO3. demonstrate proficiency in the use or the statistical programming language R to apply an ANOVA and fit regression models to experimental data
  • LO4. demonstrate proficiency in the use or the statistical programming language R to use multivariate methods to find patterns in data
  • LO5. interpret the output and understand conceptually how its derived of a regression, ANOVA and multivariate analysis that have been calculated by R
  • LO6. write statistical and modelling results as part of a scientific report
  • LO7. appraise the validity of statistical analyses used publications.

Graduate qualities

The graduate qualities are the qualities and skills that all University of Sydney graduates must demonstrate on successful completion of an award course. As a future Sydney graduate, the set of qualities have been designed to equip you for the contemporary world.

GQ1 Depth of disciplinary expertise

Deep disciplinary expertise is the ability to integrate and rigorously apply knowledge, understanding and skills of a recognised discipline defined by scholarly activity, as well as familiarity with evolving practice of the discipline.

GQ2 Critical thinking and problem solving

Critical thinking and problem solving are the questioning of ideas, evidence and assumptions in order to propose and evaluate hypotheses or alternative arguments before formulating a conclusion or a solution to an identified problem.

GQ3 Oral and written communication

Effective communication, in both oral and written form, is the clear exchange of meaning in a manner that is appropriate to audience and context.

GQ4 Information and digital literacy

Information and digital literacy is the ability to locate, interpret, evaluate, manage, adapt, integrate, create and convey information using appropriate resources, tools and strategies.

GQ5 Inventiveness

Generating novel ideas and solutions.

GQ6 Cultural competence

Cultural Competence is the ability to actively, ethically, respectfully, and successfully engage across and between cultures. In the Australian context, this includes and celebrates Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures, knowledge systems, and a mature understanding of contemporary issues.

GQ7 Interdisciplinary effectiveness

Interdisciplinary effectiveness is the integration and synthesis of multiple viewpoints and practices, working effectively across disciplinary boundaries.

GQ8 Integrated professional, ethical, and personal identity

An integrated professional, ethical and personal identity is understanding the interaction between one’s personal and professional selves in an ethical context.

GQ9 Influence

Engaging others in a process, idea or vision.

Outcome map

Learning outcomes Graduate qualities

This section outlines changes made to this unit following staff and student reviews.

Assessments have been streamlined to be more authentic.

Work, health and safety

We are governed by the Work Health and Safety Act 2011, Work Health and Safety Regulation 2011 and Codes of Practice. Penalties for non-compliance have increased. Everyone has a responsibility for health and safety at work. The University’s Work Health and Safety policy explains the responsibilities and expectations of workers and others, and the procedures for managing WHS risks associated with University activities.

General Laboratory Safety Rules

  • No eating or drinking is allowed in any laboratory under any circumstances 
  • Follow safety instructions in your manual and posted in laboratories 
  • In case of fire, follow instructions posted outside the laboratory door 


The University reserves the right to amend units of study or no longer offer certain units, including where there are low enrolment numbers.

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