AF4030 - Introduction to Mathematics and Statistics

What will I learn on this module?

This module will introduce you to general mathematical and statistical methods used to analyse and interpret accounting, financial and economic data. The module will address and review essential preliminaries of algebra and mathematical functions, such as linear, polynomial, exponential, and logarithmic functions; expanding on numerical series as well as context- based optimisation problems. These topics will be complemented with a comprehensive review of descriptive statistics and an introduction to the normal distribution function, the process of statistical estimation, and hypothesis testing carried out by means of both parametric and non-parametric tests. Key-topics included in this module:

1. Review of Basic Algebra for accounting, Finance and economics;
2. Introduction to Differentiation;
3. Introduction to Numerical Series;
4. Constrained and Unconstrained Optimisation;
5. The Normal Distribution Function in the financial world;
6. Introduction to Statistical Estimation;
7. Hypotheses Testing of accounting, financial and economic data.

How will I learn on this module?

The content of this module will be taught in lectures which will explain mathematical and statistical topics via means of notations, formulas, rules, properties and operations, and key derivations. Each lecture will be supported by a workshop in a computer lab where the corresponding mathematical and statistical tasks will be addressed and resolved both on the board and in Excel.

Both lectures and workshop sessions are designed to provide students with rigorous interpretative and analytical skills of mathematical and statistical operations and results. In particular, activities in the workshops will aim at strengthening students’ understanding regarding calculations and derivations mechanisms, including subjects’ related meaning and limitations.

This module will be assessed by an open notes exam with both a hand written and Excel based components. Directed learning will be based upon a wide range of activities including pre-reading, preparation for interactive activities, practice in IT lab, and use of the discussion board to learn and share knowledge.

Independent learning will aim at stimulating students with regard to identifying and pursuing areas of interest in relation to mathematics and statistics, by providing a deeper/broader knowledge and understanding of the subjects through a range of learning activities that will include extended reading, reflection, practice, as well as mathematical and statistical calculations. Critical reflection on knowledge, experience and practice will underpin the learning and teaching philosophy along with the explicit development of competence.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

A team of academic staff members will lead on the delivery of lectures and IT workshops, with the latter aimed at providing a closer, more personal academic support. The module is also supported by an e-Learning portal, which will include lecture materials, IT workshop exercises and data files, alongside assessment details and various support facilities such as recorded lectures, IT applications, and other electronic support facilities.

You will be provided with a weekly electronic reading list that comprises of various academic reports, video links and journal articles that showcase the theory and application of various techniques presented in the module. Your module assessment consists of empirically-based work in the field of accounting, economics and finance, and you will be encouraged to actively engage in the learning process throughout the semester.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at:
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team –

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:
• To understand, and apply a variety of mathematical and statistical techniques (MLO1).

• To solve mathematical and statistical problems through the selection of specific tools and techniques (MLO2).

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):

• To be able to identify relevant method for empirical applications (MLO3).

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:

• To be able to use statistical and mathematical models for the analysis of data (MLO4).

How will I be assessed?

Formative assessment
Formative assessment will take place through group work, assignment discussion and reflection, discussion board activity on the e-learning platform, case study activity, and theory/practice related discussions. Criteria will be provided to enable participants to understand what is expected of them and how they will be assessed on their performance. Participants are required to demonstrate self-reflection and reflective practice where appropriate. Formative feedback will be provided throughout the module, particularly in relation to workshop and seminar tasks. Students should, however, be aware that formative feedback can, and will, occur in any communication with the academic tutor.

Summative assessment
Students will be assessed through a two hour (plus 10 minutes. reading time) practical exam which will test comprehension of the covered material (100%). The exam provides students with access to open notes so that they can make use of formulas and notes to answer exam questions. (MLO 1, 2, 3, 4)





Module abstract

This module introduces you to a wide range of mathematical and statistical tools vital for the study and understanding of accounting, economics and finance. Its content, structure and activities are designed to build your confidence in using these tools to analyse practical problems and issues across all three disciplines. A number of practical workshop sessions require you to use software to analyse and interpret data. Assessment and feedback are aimed at strengthening your knowledge of mathematical operations and statistical methods through data analysis and discussing the results. By learning these critical skills, you’ll boost your employment prospects and unlock new entrepreneurial opportunities.

Course info

UCAS Code N395

Credits 20

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 3 years Full Time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Department Newcastle Business School

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2024 or September 2025

Fee Information

Module Information

All information is accurate at the time of sharing. 

Full time Courses are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but could include elements of online learning. Most courses run as planned and as promoted on our website and via our marketing materials, but if there are any substantial changes (as determined by the Competition and Markets Authority) to a course or there is the potential that course may be withdrawn, we will notify all affected applicants as soon as possible with advice and guidance regarding their options. It is also important to be aware that optional modules listed on course pages may be subject to change depending on uptake numbers each year.  

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with possible restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors if this is deemed necessary in future.


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