Basics of Statistical Analysis

Diane M. Thomson1

1 Joint Science Department, Claremont McKenna, Pitzer, and Scripps Colleges, Claremont, California
Publication Name:  Current Protocols Essential Laboratory Techniques
Unit Number:  Appendix 4B
DOI:  10.1002/9780470089941.eta04bs03
Online Posting Date:  June, 2010
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Abstract

The goal of this appendix is to introduce basic methods in graphing and data analysis and explore some fundamental concepts in statistical reasoning. Three examples of data‐analysis problems relevant to molecular biology are used to illustrate methods covered in a first statistics course, including the two‐sample t test, simple linear regression, and chi square tests for goodness of fit and contingency table hypotheses. The appendix also explores the selection and interpretation of appropriate summary graphs for these analyses, including the use of error bar plots, scatterplots, and bar charts. In addition, a number of key terms and concepts are introduced and explained in the context of the three example problems, including summary statistics, sampling variation, the standard error, null hypothesis testing, the use of test statistics, and the interpretation of p values. Curr. Protoc. Essential Lab. Tech. 3:A.4B.1‐A.4B.22. © 2010 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Keywords: data analysis; graphing; standard error; two‐sample t test; linear regression; chi square; goodness of fit; contingency table

     
 
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Table of Contents

  • Overview and Principles
  • Where to Start: Types of Data and Analyses
  • Graphing Different Kinds of Data
  • Performing Statistical Analysis
  • Conclusion
  • Literature Cited
  • Figures
  • Tables
     
 
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Materials

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Figures

Videos

Literature Cited

   Zar, J.H. 2009. Biostatistical Analysis, 5th ed. Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, N.J.
Internet Resources
  http://faculty.vassar.edu/lowry/VassarStats.html
  VassarStats: Website for Statistical Computation.
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