Statistics for Economists

Second year module

The course is designed for students studying economics and related subjects, who are already familiar with some fundamental statistical ideas and methods. It aims to provide economists with a broad knowledge of the different problems of statistics, the concepts that are used to think about them, the methods that are used to try to solve them, and the historical origins of each of these. Where possible we will choose examples of statistical problems in economic contexts.

Examples of subjects which may be chosen for discussion are: the history of statistics; statistical decision theory; Bayesian methods; classical inference; classical estimation; likelihood theory; non-parametric statistics; bootstrap methods. Probability distributions will be studied to the extent the above topics require.

Learning outcomes

By the end of this module, the student should be able to:

  • Understand the context, terminology, and methods associated with standard statistical problems arising in economics and related subjects.
  • Apply such terminology and methods to the analysis of problems within specific statistical areas.
  • Understand the major concepts of statistics as an outcome of their historical development.


  • 2-hour examination at end of academic year (80%)
  • 2x class test exams (10% each).