Introduction to Statistics

Paul Hewson of Plymouth University gave us an introduction to statistics and R.

The following notes are based on this session.


  • Data and summaries thereof are not considered “statistics”
  • “Statistics” are rather mathematical models of what generated the observed data (explanation) and which can be used to predict more data points
  • Generally, regard observed data as a sample from a population that we try and make a statement about
  • Models are hardly every correct exactly and are usually just a starting point

Bayesian Inference

  • Bayes theorem is provable and solid
  • Where it gets interesting is the choice of the prior distribution


Random Notes

  • logit is a link function
  • Least squares parameters describe a hyperplane that minimizes the $L_2$ error
  • Normal QQ plots
  • Leverage:
    • is a property of each observed data point
    • is the change in the predicted value for a given observation of the independent value caused by moving the corresponding observed dependent value up or down
    • lecture notes on this
  • Residuals
  • p-value is a measure of the evidence against the Null hypothesis
  • Statistical testing has not been confirmed well for large N (i.e. a great number of data points)
    • use a computer to generate data from the assumed model and compare model data with your sample to decide whether the model makes sense
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