BSc (Med Sci) & BSC (Dent Sci) Clinical Medicine Specialist Course 4: Statistics MED4048

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Medicine Dentistry and Nursing
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Runs Throughout Semesters 1 and 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

This course provides an introduction to medical statistics and the basic analyses used in both clinical and laboratory studies.


Weekly lectures and tutorials. Additional tutorials as needed.

Requirements of Entry

Mandatory Entry Requirements

Actively enrolled in an MBChB or BDS and normally have successfully completed at least the first 3 years. Exceptionally, some external students from specific partner institutions may join the course after completion of two years of MBChB or BDS (or equivalent); however award of the intercalated degree will be withheld until they have subsequently completed the required number of additional credits (or equivalent) at their home institution.

Recommended Entry Requirements

Will normally be placed within the top 50% of the year and have demonstrated good academic progress.

Excluded Courses



BSc (Med Sci), BSc (Dent Sci) Clinical Medicine Core Course

BSc (Med Sci), BSc (Dent Sci) Clinical Medicine Research Project

BSc (Med Sci), BSc (Dent Sci) Clinical Medicine Specialist Course



Written exam in April / May diet.

Main Assessment In: April/May

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? Not applicable for Honours courses

Reassessments are normally available for all courses, except those which contribute to the Honours classification. For non Honours courses, students are offered reassessment in all or any of the components of assessment if the satisfactory (threshold) grade for the overall course is not achieved at the first attempt. This is normally grade D3 for undergraduate students and grade C3 for postgraduate students. Exceptionally it may not be possible to offer reassessment of some coursework items, in which case the mark achieved at the first attempt will be counted towards the final course grade. Any such exceptions for this course are described below. 

Course Aims

The aim of this course is to provide a knowledge and understanding of the principles involved in the statistical methodology of clinical trials from the conception of the research idea to the presentation of the completed project. It will equip students with the skills to design a simple study, collect and analyze the data using appropriate statistical methods and then interpret and present the results in both lay and technical terms. It will also equip them with the ability to appraise critically the research of others.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

demonstrate knowledge and understanding of common statistical terms such as p-value, confidence interval etc;

ability to carry out basic statistical analysis;

demonstrate the ability to design an experiment appropriate to the hypothesis;

demonstrate the ability to design an experiment appropriate to the hypothesis specified by making an informed judgement of the most appropriate experimental design for the problem;

demonstrate the ability to display graphically and describe the data collected;

carry out appropriate simple statistical analyses using a computer package such as Minitab and SPSS;

interpret the results of a study and communicate them to both technical and lay audiences and critically appraise the methods, results and clinical implications of published and other research.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.

Attendance of at least 80% of lectures and tutorials is mandatory along with active participation in the seminar and other teaching opportunities.