STA1010 - Statistical methods for science - 2019

6 points, SCA Band 2, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

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



Organisational Unit

School of Mathematical Sciences

Chief examiner(s)

Associate Professor Jonathan Keith


Associate Professor Jonathan Keith
Dr Daniel McInnes

Unit guides



  • First semester 2019 (On-campus)
  • Second semester 2019 (On-campus)


SCI1020, VCE Mathematical methods 3 and 4, or equivalent international qualifications listed in the Unit Guide.


ETC1000, ETW1000, ETW1102, ETX1100, FIT1006 and MAT1097.

Note: students who have completed STA1010 cannot subsequently undertake SCI1020.


Descriptive statistics, scatter plots, correlation, line of best fit. Elementary probability theory. Confidence intervals and hypothesis tests using normal, t and binomial distributions. Use of computer software. Formal treatment of statistical analyses and the role of probability in statistical inference.


On completion of this unit students will be able to:

  1. Understand the key steps of the scientific method and how it can be applied to real problems that involve data analysis and interpretation;
  2. Appreciate how statistical data is collected, analysed and stored;
  3. Understand the meaning of population parameters such as mean, standard deviation, and median;
  4. Understand the importance of statistical techniques in the analysis of data;
  5. Present and interpret data graphically;
  6. Determine confidence intervals for population parameters, and distinguish between a population parameter and a sample statistic;
  7. Determine the appropriate statistical technique for a given context;
  8. Perform simple statistical operations using Excel;
  9. Take a random sample from a population and determine whether data fits a statistical hypothesis;
  10. Prepare and write a scientific report.


NOTE: From 1 July 2019, the duration of all exams is changing to combine reading and writing time. The new exam duration for this unit is 3 hours and 10 minutes.

End of semester examination (3 hours): 60% (Hurdle)

Continuous assessment: 40% (Hurdle)

Hurdle requirement: To pass this unit a student must achieve at least 50% overall and at least 40% for both the end-of-semester examination and continuous assessment components.

Workload requirements

Three 1-hour lectures and one 2-hour applied class per week

See also Unit timetable information

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study