10/20/2018 | short news | Angelina Tittmann

A bit of statistics

There is no doctoral thesis without data. But how do I design my experiment or investigation? How do I test my hypothesis? How do I explore data and how do I deal with outliers? On the World Statistics Day, we offer the corresponding course at IGB.

Doctoral students bring their own data to analyse them. | Photo: IGB/Angelina Tittmann

Today is World Statistics Day! How apt that some of our PhD students focus intensively on experimental design and basic statistics this week. They all are in the first year of their doctoral theses. From 15 October to 22 October, they learn in our basic course how to select and carry out suitable tests. The training is led by Kirsten Pohlmann, who coordinates the doctoral programme at IGB. She shows tips and tricks for statistical analyses, but also problems and pitfalls. “Many students do not learn the basics of statistics and experimental design in their studies,” she says. “Although, this knowledge is indispensable for conducting research.”

The basic course is only one part of the portfolio: IGB offers a wide range of internal courses on more complex statistical methods. The spectrum ranges from multivariate analysis methods to courses on mixed statistical models to Bayesian statistics. In addition, there is a whole range of other trainings that provide soft skills and interdisciplinary knowledge, e.g. on scientific poster presentations, scientific writing, personal time management and individual career planning within and outside of science. Most of them are led by IGB staff. All courses are also open to Master students and PostDocs.

Finally, a bit of statistics on our own account: female doctoral students visit our course programme more frequently than their male colleagues (Chi-squared test, p=0.00012). In the current course, they even make up 77%. And that regardless of the fact, that only 42% of all doctoral students are women. Why is that? Well, we can only guess…;)

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