833317 Formulation of questions and experimental design in ecological research

Lecture and seminar
Semester hours
Lecturer (assistant)
Suarez-Rubio, Marcela
Offered in
Wintersemester 2019/20
Languages of instruction


The course will use a combination of lectures, discussions, and hands-on exercises to understand a variety of concepts on experimental design and data analysis approaches. Specific topics included are:
• Introduction to statistical principles
• Framing and testing hypothesis
• Experimental design
• Tests to look at differences
• Tests to look at relationships

Previous knowledge expected

Basic classes in statistics will help a lot

Objective (expected results of study and acquired competences)

Understanding experimental design and data analysis approaches are essential to successfully accomplish ecological research and to critically evaluate research evidence presented in scientific papers. Consequently, ecologists should know whether an experiment is properly conceived, correctly controlled, adequately analyzed, and correctly interpreted. The goal of this course is to provide students with conceptual and practical understanding of experimental design and typical analytical approaches used in ecological studies. Discussion of specific designs and analyses will prepare students to understand typical statistical analysis presented in scientific papers and to undertake their own investigations. Examples and problem sets will utilize R (a free software environment for statistical computing and graphics) to analyze data.

1. Understand the general approaches to sampling populations, managing data, exploring data, and descriptive and inferential statistics.
2. Recognize the strengths and limitation of different experimental designs and data analysis approaches.
3. Utilize R to implement statistical analyses and generate graphical summaries.
You can find more details like the schedule or information about exams on the course-page in BOKUonline.