Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

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This unit entry is for students who completed this unit in 2016 only. For students planning to study the unit, please refer to the unit indexes in the the current edition of the Handbook. If you have any queries contact the managing faculty for your course or area of study.

Monash University

6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Postgraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.


Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Organisational Unit

Department of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine


Professor Rory Wolfe, Professor A Forbes


Alfred Hospital


This unit involves the study of basic probability and calculus-based methods of underpinning probability distributions and parameter estimation.


Upon successful completion of this unit, students should be able to:

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of the meaning and laws of probability.
  2. Recognise common probability distributions and their properties.
  3. Apply calculus-based tools to derive key features of a probability distribution, such as mean and variance.
  4. Manipulate multivariate probability distributions to obtain marginal and conditional distributions.
  5. Obtain mean, variance and the probability distribution of transformations of random variables.
  6. Understand properties of parameter estimators and the usefulness of large sample approximations in statistics.
  7. Appreciate the role of simulation in demonstrating and explaining statistical concepts.


Written assignments (100%)

Chief examiner(s)



This unit is only available to students enrolled in the Graduate Certificate, Graduate Diploma or Masters of Biostatistics.

Additional information on this unit is available from the faculty at: