The main recommended text book is Elements of
Statistical Learning, available freely on-line as a PDF. This book is a little technical and terse in
places, so students may find it helpful to augment this reference with
some more introductory material.
An R and S companion to multivariate statistics
is also useful, and should be available electronically to Newcastle
University students via the above "reading list" link. It proceeds at
a more gentle pace than the text above, and gives a bit more