LISA (Laboratory for Interdisciplinary Statistical Analysis) provided a series of evening short courses to help graduate students use statistics in their research. The focus of these two-hour courses was on teaching practical statistical techniques for analyzing or collecting data.
October 17, 2013
Survey Design and Analysis
Instructor: Marcos Carzolio
Researchers sometimes ask, “What is the best way to learn my subjects’ characteristics?” Often, the answer is simply to “just ask them!” The survey is a popular research tool that comes with easily-overlooked pitfalls. However, a thoughtfully and properly designed survey can elicit valuable information from the target population. With data in hand, visualization methods can direct the researcher toward the next step in analysis. In this course, the principles of error and bias minimization will be discussed. Topics covered will include sampling methods, sample size calculations, questionnaire design, and exploratory data plotting. An introductory-level understanding of statistics is a prerequisite. Real-world examples from a survey conducted in Mozambique and from pre-course surveys will be presented. Data from these surveys will be plotted with the methods presented, which will cover scatterplots, boxplots, and factor analysis.
Course files are available on the course webpage (http://www.lisa.stat.vt.edu/?q=node/6389).