The prerequisites differ across type of student. For graduate students in the Government Department, there are no prerequisites. For other graduate students, undergraduate students, and Extension School students, the prerequisite is GOV 50, GOV E-1005, or the equivalent.
For any student who meets the prerequisites yet is concerned with his or her preparedness for the course, we strongly encourage the following in advance of the semester. First, we recommend reading and working through the exercises in David Freedman, Robert Pisani, and Roger Purves, Statistics, 2007 (any of the older editions should suffice as well). Next, we encourage familiarization with the appropriate statistical package - R or Stata - for the section of the course the student intends on taking. Moreover, if the student plans on typesetting problem set answers in LaTeX, familiarity with the LaTeX markup language would be helpful. Resources on R, Stata, and LaTeX are available here.