STATS 240 : Design and Structured Data


2024 Semester Two (1245) (15 POINTS)

Course Prescription

An introduction to research study design and the analysis of structured data. Blocking, randomisation, and replication in designed experiments. Clusters, stratification, and weighting in samples. Other examples of structured data.

Course Overview

STATS 240 covers two of the most important types of statistical research studies: surveys and designed experiments. STATS 240 is recommended for anyone doing a major in Statistics but is also useful for undergraduate students from other majors in Science, Engineering, and Commerce, who are interested in sample surveys or designed experiments. The characteristics of a well-designed survey, as well as practical considerations and administrative issues, are discussed. Different sampling methods (stratified, cluster, multistage) are introduced and their strengths and weaknesses are explored. The proper analysis of data from surveys based on the sampling design and making valid inferences about a population using this analysis is emphasized. The underlying fundamental principles (replication, randomisation and blocking) of statistical experimental design are explained and their importance is discussed. The concepts of block structure and treatment structure of an experiment are introduced. The characteristics and proper analysis (using the appropriate data model) of the most common types of designs (completely randomised, random complete block, balanced incomplete block, split-plot) are explored in detail with an emphasis on making valid inferences about the system being studied.

Course Requirements

Prerequisite: STATS 101 or 108 Restriction: STATS 340

Capabilities Developed in this Course

Capability 3: Knowledge and Practice
Capability 4: Critical Thinking
Capability 5: Solution Seeking
Capability 6: Communication
Capability 8: Ethics and Professionalism
Graduate Profile: Bachelor of Science

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course, students will be able to:
  1. Communicate effectively the findings from the analysis of data from a designed experiment (Capability 3, 4, 5 and 6)
  2. Describe the three fundamental principles of experimental design and explain why each is important (Capability 3, 4, 5 and 6)
  3. Analyse data from a designed experiment and interpret the results (Capability 3, 4, 5 and 6)
  4. Create graphs that effectively communicate the results of a statistical analysis (Capability 3, 4, 5 and 6)
  5. Identify, programme, and describe complex survey designs (Capability 3, 4, 5 and 6)
  6. Undertake, analyse, and interpret survey data (Capability 3, 4, 5 and 6)
  7. Explain the considerations when making decisions about sampling design (Capability 3, 4, 5 and 6)
  8. Describe the impact of survey conduct on data quality and the accuracy of results (Capability 3, 4, 5 and 6)
  9. Describe the principles underlying ethical research (Capability 3, 4, 5, 6 and 8)


Assessment Type Percentage Classification
Final Exam 50% Individual Examination
Online Test 15% Individual Coursework
Assignments 20% Individual Coursework
Quizzes 15% Individual Coursework
Assessment Type Learning Outcome Addressed
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
Final Exam
Online Test
A minimum of 50% is required in both the coursework component and the exam to pass this course.
The test may be held in the evening. Students will be notified of date and time on Canvas. 
Attendance in person will be required for test and exam.


Tuākana Science is a multi-faceted programme for Māori and Pacific students providing topic specific tutorials, one-on-one sessions, test and exam preparation and more. Explore your options at

Workload Expectations

This course is a standard 15-point course and students are expected to spend 12.5 hours per week involved in each 15-point course that they are enrolled in.

For this course, a typical weekly workload includes:

  • 3 hours of lectures
  • 3-4 hours of reading and thinking about the content
  • 5-6 hours of work on assignments, quizzes, and/or test preparation

Delivery Mode

Campus Experience

Attendance is expected at scheduled activities including labs to complete components of the course.
Lectures will be available as recordings. Other learning activities including labs will not be available as recordings.
The course will not include live online events.
The activities for the course are scheduled as a standard weekly timetable.
Attendance in person will be required for any on campus test and exam.

Learning Resources

Course materials are made available in a learning and collaboration tool called Canvas which also includes reading lists and lecture recordings (where available).

Please remember that the recording of any class on a personal device requires the permission of the instructor.

Lecture Notes:

  • Lecture notes are provided on Canvas

Student Feedback

During the course Class Representatives in each class can take feedback to the staff responsible for the course and staff-student consultative committees.

At the end of the course students will be invited to give feedback on the course and teaching through a tool called SET or Qualtrics. The lecturers and course co-ordinators will consider all feedback.

Your feedback helps to improve the course and its delivery for all students.

Students found that the regular online quizzes aided their learning and these will continue in 2024. The Statistics Assistance Hub will provide tutor support for quizzes and assignments.

Academic Integrity

The University of Auckland will not tolerate cheating, or assisting others to cheat, and views cheating in coursework as a serious academic offence. The work that a student submits for grading must be the student's own work, reflecting their learning. Where work from other sources is used, it must be properly acknowledged and referenced. This requirement also applies to sources on the internet. A student's assessed work may be reviewed for potential plagiarism or other forms of academic misconduct, using computerised detection mechanisms.

Class Representatives

Class representatives are students tasked with representing student issues to departments, faculties, and the wider university. If you have a complaint about this course, please contact your class rep who will know how to raise it in the right channels. See your departmental noticeboard for contact details for your class reps.


The content and delivery of content in this course are protected by copyright. Material belonging to others may have been used in this course and copied by and solely for the educational purposes of the University under license.

You may copy the course content for the purposes of private study or research, but you may not upload onto any third party site, make a further copy or sell, alter or further reproduce or distribute any part of the course content to another person.

Inclusive Learning

All students are asked to discuss any impairment related requirements privately, face to face and/or in written form with the course coordinator, lecturer or tutor.

Student Disability Services also provides support for students with a wide range of impairments, both visible and invisible, to succeed and excel at the University. For more information and contact details, please visit the Student Disability Services’ website

Special Circumstances

If your ability to complete assessed coursework is affected by illness or other personal circumstances outside of your control, contact a member of teaching staff as soon as possible before the assessment is due.

If your personal circumstances significantly affect your performance, or preparation, for an exam or eligible written test, refer to the University’s aegrotat or compassionate consideration page

This should be done as soon as possible and no later than seven days after the affected test or exam date.

Learning Continuity

In the event of an unexpected disruption, we undertake to maintain the continuity and standard of teaching and learning in all your courses throughout the year. If there are unexpected disruptions the University has contingency plans to ensure that access to your course continues and course assessment continues to meet the principles of the University’s assessment policy. Some adjustments may need to be made in emergencies. You will be kept fully informed by your course co-ordinator/director, and if disruption occurs you should refer to the university website for information about how to proceed.

The delivery mode may change depending on COVID restrictions. Any changes will be communicated through Canvas.

Student Charter and Responsibilities

The Student Charter assumes and acknowledges that students are active participants in the learning process and that they have responsibilities to the institution and the international community of scholars. The University expects that students will act at all times in a way that demonstrates respect for the rights of other students and staff so that the learning environment is both safe and productive. For further information visit Student Charter


Elements of this outline may be subject to change. The latest information about the course will be available for enrolled students in Canvas.

In this course students may be asked to submit coursework assessments digitally. The University reserves the right to conduct scheduled tests and examinations for this course online or through the use of computers or other electronic devices. Where tests or examinations are conducted online remote invigilation arrangements may be used. In exceptional circumstances changes to elements of this course may be necessary at short notice. Students enrolled in this course will be informed of any such changes and the reasons for them, as soon as possible, through Canvas.

Published on 31/10/2023 10:54 a.m.