Fundamentals of Statistics: Online

This introductory unit in statistical methods emphasises statistical techniques applicable to the social sciences.


This course will be run over 5 days:

  • Session One: 10:00 am to 12:00 pm
  • Session Two: 12:30 pm to 1:30 pm
  • Lunch time 1:30 pm to 2:30 pm
  • Session Three: 2:30pm to 4:30pm



This course is being held online via Zoom and run on Australian Eastern Standard Time (UTC +10)

(Canberra, Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane time)





Level 1 - runs over 5 days

Imma Guarnieri [BSc, Grad DipEd, Grad Dip Applied Science (Social Statistics), Masters of Biostatistics] is a sessional lecturer in the School of Health Sciences at Swinburne University of Technology and in Medical Education at the University of Melbourne. She has been involved in teaching Statistics to postgraduate students for the past 20 years.

Course dates: Monday 3 July 2023 - Friday 7 July 2023
Course status: Course completed (no new applicants)
Week 2
About this course: 

In this course, you will obtain a solid foundation in basic statistical concepts and procedures to progress with some confidence into more advanced topics. This is an introductory unit in statistical methods emphasising statistical techniques applicable to the social sciences, although these introductory techniques are also relevant to the health sciences. Key examples from journal articles will illustrate the use and reporting of the statistical techniques covered in this unit.


Our approach to learning will be largely non-mathematical, concentrating on concepts rather than mathematical theory. Participants familiar with the use of a statistical software package, but lacking statistical training should also start with this course.


The course will use the free and open-source software jamovi, which can be downloaded from

While jamovi is built on top of the R statistical language, it has a look and feel very similar to IBM SPSS Statistics and is easier to use in many ways.  

Depending on student preferences, there will be an opportunity to use IMB SPSS Statistics as an alternative. Instructions will be provided for both packages and students can choose either jamovi or IBM SPSS Statistics.

Course syllabus: 


Day 1

  • Level of measurement of data
  • Descriptive statistics and graphs for a single variable.
    • Histogram, stemplot, boxplot, bar chart, frequency tables
    • Mean, median, mode, std deviation, quartiles, range, outliers


Day 2

  • Descriptive statistics for relationships between two variables
    • Comparative boxplots, scatterplots, contingency tables, clustered and stacked bar charts.
    • Introduction to correlation and regression.


Day 3

  • Foundations of basic inference and confidence intervals.
    • Normal Distribution, standardisation
    • Sampling distribution of the mean
  • Introduction to hypothesis testing, confidence intervals and effect size statistics.


Day 4

  • t-tests
    • Single sample t-test, paired samples t-test, independent sample t-test
    • confidence intervals, effects size statistic (Cohen's d), testing of assumptions including how to test normality assumption.
  • Limitation of p-values and statistical significance
  • Chi-square test
    • Hypothesis test, effect size statistic (Cramer'sV), testing of assumptions, journal article example.
  • Inference for correlation


Day 5

  • Independent samples t-test
  • Relationship between power, effect size, sample size, type 1 and type 2 errors
  • Introduction to GPower for determining the sample size required to achieve a given level of power for studies involving independent samples t-tests
  • choosing the correct statistical test.




Course format: 

Training in this course will be over ZOOM using your own computer and internet connection.


This course will be run over 5 days in the following sessions each day:

  • Session One: 10:00 am to 12:00 pm
  • Session Two: 12:30 pm to 1:30 pm
  • Lunch time 1:30 pm to 2:30 pm
  • Session Three: 2:30pm to 4:30pm
Recommended Background: 

There are no prerequisites for this course, nor is previous computing experience with IBM SPSS Statistics or jamovi necessary.


Recommended Texts: 

The instructor's bound, book length course notes will serve as the course text.

The notes contain detailed explanations and examples of all the statistical concepts covered.

Detailed instructions will also be provided for how to obtain the statistical output from both jamovi and IBM SPSS v28 / v29.


Course notes will be sent to your nominated 'shipping' address in advance.

Course fees
Non Member: 
Full time student Member: 

Q. Do I have to know any statistics to do this course?

A. No, there are no prerequisties and you don't need any computing experience.

Participant feedback: 

From knowing absolutely nothing about stats, I feel I have a handle on at least some of the concepts and application!


Extremely useful for higher degree research as a beginning step.

It provided an excellent understanding of the underlying principles of statistics that helped understand the techniques taught as well as underpinning of future statistical techniques.


The workbooks were great and the tasks were well connected to the coursework and these workbooks. It felt like there was a great balance between doing activities ourselves and the teacher-led sessions.


I’ve always found statistics to be difficult abstact and confusing. I had many aha moments with Imma - she’s a great teacher.


It provided fundamental thinking & reasoning behind concepts I see at work such as confidence intervals & involved some maths - which makes me want to learn more.


Went through each topic well with a great balance of theory/ lecture / practical / demonstration and practise labs and computer use.


Coming from a non stats background! I have gained a very informed intro to stats.


I will be more literate in reading literature drawing on statistics in myfield as well as able to apply some of the techniques myself.


very well balanced. Loved the activity book with step-by-step notes.


I have learnt so many basic concepts that I have been expected to understand. To have the opportunity to learn them is fantastic.




Winter Program 2023

The instructor's bound, book length course notes will serve as the course text.