Introductory Statistics for Researchers

Tue, 26/09/2017 - 09:00 to Wed, 27/09/2017 - 17:00

Stats Central and the School of Mathematics and Statistics at UNSW are jointly conducting a short course providing an overview of statistical design and analysis methods. The course emphasises understanding the concepts underlying statistical procedures (relying on a minimum of mathematics) and interpreting the output from statistical analyses. The statistical package used in the course is R (click here for more information). Please note if you are unfamiliar with R a one day Introduction to R is being run on the 25th September, 2017 (see above).

Introductory Statistics for Researchers - September 2017

In many disciplines, researchers wishing to publish are asked to provide a rigorous statistical analysis. Reviewers are often specific about what statistical measures they want included. "Why wasn't Fisher's Exact Test used?" "Was an appropriate sample size determined a priori?"

Statistical analyses require specialised software to perform calculations. In this course, we use the free statistical program R, although researchers may have another statistical package available to them.

How does one decide which statistical procedure is the most appropriate? What do all the pages of the printout mean?

This course is designed as an introduction to statistical design and analysis for researchers. There is emphasis on understanding the concepts of statistical procedures (with a minimum of mathematics, although some will be discussed) and on interpreting computer output. This course is designed to help you, the researcher. It is helpful if you have done an undergraduate statistics subject, although this course can serve as a first introduction or a refresher.

Instructions on how to obtain computer printouts will be provided with an emphasis on interpreting the computer printout (most packages produce similar printouts). There will be plenty of practical work throughout the course.


Do you need to have previous experience using the program R?

It would be very helpful if you have some basic knowledge of R. We recommend our one-day course,Introduction to R (see above), which runs just prior to this course. However, previous experience with statistical packages like SAS, SPSS or Stata and some basic programming skills are also helpful.

Please note that R and R Studio are free to use and are both available for Windows/Mac/Linx platforms. The links are provided below:

R Project

R Studio

You can play around with the software before deciding on the course. Here is a really good website with some introductory notes for doing statistics in R.


Course Outline


Types of experiments, scales of measurement, which method to use.


In this course, the statistical software package used is R. We do not use or demonstrate SPSS.

Summarising and Graphing Data

Ways of presenting data (histograms, boxplots), measures of centre and spread, analysing tables, correlation, and confidence intervals.

Comparing Groups

Hypothesis testing concepts - power, significance, P-value. Comparing two groups (t-tests, Wilcoxon). Comparing many groups (with one treatment factor) - one-way ANOVA or Kruskal-Wallis - multiple comparison tests.

Finding Relationships

Correlation, predicting relationships (regression - simple).

Other topics covered

Non-Normal data - transformations and non-parametric tests. If time is available, we will briefly discuss sample size and power.



UNSW students: $200

UNSW staff: $400

External: $1,000

Eventbrite - Introductory Statistics for Researchers


Bring your own laptop computer.

This Short Course is based on intellectual property developed by the School of Mathematics & Statistics.

Registration closing date

Event details

Seat availability


UNSW Business School, Room 119
College Road
UNSW Kensington Campus, NSW 2052

Key contact

Dr Nancy Briggs

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