The University of Southampton

STAT6094 Statistical Disclosure Control

Module Overview

The module covers methods of disclosure control for tabular data and microdata, and how the utility of the resulting data is traded off against the risk of disclosure.

Aims and Objectives

Module Aims

The aim is to provide students with an understanding of the different methods of statistical disclosure control and of the issues involved in applying these methods in order to protect the confidentiality of respondents to statistical outputs.

Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes

Having successfully completed this module you will be able to:

  • Choose appropriate methods of statistical disclosure control for particular types of data and situations, and apply them by hand in simple situations
  • Evaluate and critique the different disclosure control methods depending on the type of statistical output (microdata or tabular data) with respect to the amount of protection afforded, and the impact on the quality of both the data and the analyses that can be done with them
  • Describe the trade-offs between privacy and openness, and how they affect the choices of policies and procedures surrounding confidentiality protection


- Motivation for Statistical Disclosure Control for statistical outputs - Measuring and quantifying disclosure risk for tabular data and micro data based on realistic scenarios of risk - Disclosure control methods for tabular data and micro data - Measuring and quantifying the impact and the effect of disclosure control methods on the quality of the data - Issues of statistical disclosure control in a Statistical Office responsible for the release of statistical data (guest lecturer from the ONS)

Special Features

This module is run as a week-long short course, a component of the MSc Official Statistics. Guest lecturer from the ONS.

Learning and Teaching

Teaching and learning methods

Lectures with integrated tutorials. Guest lecturer from the ONS to discuss issues of statistical disclosure control in a Statistical Office.

Independent Study72
Total study time100

Resources & Reading list

Willenborg, L. and de Waal, T. (2001). Elements of Statistical Disclosure Control. 

Doyle, P., Lane, J., Theeuwes, J. and Zayatz, L. eds. (2001). Confidentiality, Disclosure and Data Access. 

Handbook on Statistical Disclosure Control, Version 1.1..



MethodPercentage contribution
Exam  (2 hours) 100%


MethodPercentage contribution
Exam  (2 hours) 100%

Repeat Information

Repeat type: Internal & External

Linked modules

Pre-requisites: STAT6093 OR STAT6116


Costs associated with this module

Students are responsible for meeting the cost of essential textbooks, and of producing such essays, assignments, laboratory reports and dissertations as are required to fulfil the academic requirements for each programme of study.

In addition to this, students registered for this module typically also have to pay for:

Approved Calculators

Candidates may use calculators in the examination room only as specified by the University and as permitted by the rubric of individual examination papers. The University approved model is Casio FX-570 This may be purchased from any source and no longer needs to carry the University logo.


You will be expected to provide your own day-to-day stationery items, e.g. pens, pencils, notebooks, etc. Any specialist stationery items will be specified under the Additional Costs tab of the relevant module profile.


Where a module specifies core texts these should generally be available on the reserve list in the library. However due to demand, students may prefer to buy their own copies. These can be purchased from any source. Some modules suggest reading texts as optional background reading. The library may hold copies of such texts, or alternatively you may wish to purchase your own copies. Although not essential reading, you may benefit from the additional reading materials for the module.

Please also ensure you read the section on additional costs in the University’s Fees, Charges and Expenses Regulations in the University Calendar available at

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