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Graduate Certificate of Biostatistics


Faculty of Science and Engineering
Graduate Certificate of Biostatistics (GradCertBiostat)
Admission Requirement:
• Australian level 7 bachelor's qualification or recognised equivalent in statistics, or in a related discipline with successful completion of a unit in statistics
• Proven aptitude for advanced mathematics
English Language Proficiency:
IELTS of 6.5 overall with minimum 6.0 in each band, or equivalent
Study Mode:
Attendance Mode:
Candidature Length:
Part-time: 1 year
External — Session 1 (February)
External — Session 2 (July)
Off-Shore — Session 1 (February)
Off-Shore — Session 2 (July)
Volume of Learning:
Equivalent to 0.5 years
General requirements:
Minimum number of credit points at 800 level or above 16
Completion of other specific minimum requirements as set out below

In order to graduate students must ensure that they have satisfied all of the general requirements of the award.

Specific minimum requirements:

Credit points

800 level

Epidemiology (4)
12cp from
Mathematical Background for Biostatistics (4)
Health Indicators and Health Surveys (4)
Data Management and Statistical Computing (4)
Principles of Statistical Inference (4)
Clinical Biostatistics (4)
Design of Randomised Controlled Trials (4)
Linear Models (4)
Categorical Data and Generalised Linear Models (4)
Bioinformatics (4)
Longitudinal and Correlated Data (4)
Bayesian Statistical Methods (4)
Probability and Distribution Theory (4)
Survival Analysis (4)


Program Learning Outcomes and Additional Information
AQF Level Level 8 Graduate Certificate
CRICOS Code Distance
Overview and Aims of the Program Biostatistics is the discipline that underpins the use of statistical methods in health and medical research. Its foundation is the mathematics of variability and it encompasses the science of designing quantitative research studies and other data collections, managing and analysing data, and interpreting the results. Biostatisticians play essential roles in designing studies, using statistics to analyse data and creating methods to solve research problems. The Graduate Certificate of Biostatistics program provides a sound mathematically-based introduction to biostatistical methods, with a strong emphasis on applications in all areas of health and medical research.
Graduate Capabilities

The Graduate Capabilities Framework articulates the fundamentals that underpin all of Macquarie’s academic programs. It expresses these as follows:

Cognitive capabilities
(K) discipline specific knowledge and skills
(T) critical, analytical and integrative thinking
(P) problem solving and research capability
(I) creative and innovative

Interpersonal or social capabilities
(C) effective communication
(E) engaged and ethical local and global citizens
(A) socially and environmentally active and responsible

Personal capabilities
(J) capable of professional and personal judgement and initiative
(L) commitment to continuous learning

Program Learning Outcomes By the end of this program it is anticipated you should be able to:

1. demonstrate a sound understanding of epidemiological study design and the theory and application of some of the major areas of biostatistics relevant to professional practice (K)
2. identify some of the relevant statistical issues in practical problems in medical/health settings and to propose an appropriate statistical design and/or analysis methodology (K,T,P,J)
3.put into practice professional codes of conduct and ethical standards such as those of the Statistical Society of Australia (E)

4. employ skills in statistical analyses to handle practical problems using modern statistical techniques and software (K,T,P)
5. collect and manage data, including design relevant databases, apply quality control procedures and handle data in an ethical manner (K,T,P,E)
6. communicate about biostatistical issues with clinical/health personnel (C ,E,J).
Learning and Teaching Methods The Biostatistics program is based on external delivery. Unit delivery comprises study guides, which are delivered either electronically or via hard copy, and intensive web-based support using a virtual tutorial environment. Material is organised into modules for self-study, generally of two or three weeks’ duration, at the end of which exercises or case studies are attempted. Discussion boards are used for interactive learning in all units. These are enhanced by video lectures and clips to varying extents, with mathematical software supplementing use of traditional techniques of calculus and matrix algebra, for example. The mode of external delivery makes the program accessible to clinicians and other professionals, for whom on-campus study would be infeasible. The enhancement of traditional learning with intensive online support and video clips substantially enriches the distance learning and counteracts the isolation that external students may experience. Students are required to have access to a computer capable of running statistical software, and reliable internet access.
Assessment Assessment methods include problem solving, application of biostatistical methods using statistical software, and producing biostatistical reports. Assessment consists of assignments, and in some cases determining solutions to selected exercises and/or case studies. Worked solutions are posted online, and individual feedback is provided by written comments on the marked assignments. Biostatistical analysis and scientific communication are important aspects of the program and students will gain experience in these via the assessment tasks.
Recognition of Prior Learning

Macquarie University may recognise prior formal, informal and non-formal learning for the purpose of granting credit towards, or admission into, a program. The recognition of these forms of learning is enabled by the University’s Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) Policy (see and its associated Procedures and Guidelines. The RPL pages contain information on how to apply, links to registers, and the approval processes for recognising prior learning for entry or credit. 

Domestic Students
For undergraduate RPL information visit
For domestic postgraduate RPL information visit

International Students
For RPL information visit

Support for Learning

Macquarie University aspires to be an inclusive and supportive community of learners where all students are given the opportunity to meet their academic and personal goals. The University offers a comprehensive range of free and accessible student support services which include academic advice, counselling and psychological services, advocacy services and welfare advice, careers and employment, disability services and academic skills workshops amongst others. There is also a bulk billing medical service located on campus.

Further information can be found at

Campus Wellbeing contact details:
Phone: +61 2 9850 7497

Program Standards and Quality

The program is subject to an ongoing comprehensive process of quality review in accordance with a pre-determined schedule that complies with the Higher Education Standards Framework. The review is overseen by Macquarie University's peak academic governance body, the Academic Senate and takes into account feedback received from students, staff and external stakeholders.

Graduate Destinations and Employability The Graduate Certificate in Biostatistics is suitable for those wanting a good understanding of the principles of epidemiology and some aspects of biostatistics. Graduates may move into careers within the pharmaceutical industry, public health positions and clinical research.
Assessment Regulations

This program is subject to Macquarie University regulations, including but not limited to those specified in the Assessment Policy, Academic Honesty Policy, the Final Examination Policy and relevant University Rules. For all approved University policies, procedures, guidelines and schedules visit

Accreditation This is an Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) accredited qualification.

2017 Unit Information

When offered:
S1 Day
Permission of Executive Dean of Faculty
HSC Chinese, CHN113, CHN148