Category Archives: Statistics

Recommended: Guidelines for estimating biostatistician effort and resources on grants

What percentage effort is reasonable for Biostatistics support on a research grant? The UC Davis Biostatistics Group says 10% as a bare minimum, 35-60% for straightforward projects with uncomplicated analyses, and 50-100%+ for large or complex projects. They give examples of large and complex projects: interim analysis, multi-site projects, development of novel statistical methods, and assembly of data from large, complex, or poorly documented administrative or survey data sets.

They also describe how to split the effort between a PhD Biostatistician, who supervises the overall effort, and a MS Biostatistician, who does most of the data management and statistical analysis.

Another point worth noting is that any grant listing less than 10% effort for a Biostatistician requires a special sign off. Continue reading

Recommended: Statistical and Machine Learning forecasting methods: Concerns and ways forward

At first glance, you might think that this article looks like a vindication of traditional statistics. Classical time series models (methods that were available in the 1960′s) outperform newer machine language forecasting models. Then, you might worry that the comparisons were unfair. But neither viewpoint is accurate. The classical time series models have certain structural advantages for certain types of problems, but you might be better off with machine learning if you use classical time series as a preprocessing step, such as de-seasonalizing your data. If nothing else, this article provides a nice overview of some of the major machine learning methods. Continue reading

PMean: My teaching interests, one page limit

I have been applying to a variety of jobs, and some of them, mostly universities, want a statement of teaching philosophy, research interests, or some combination. I enjoy writing these, except for the ones that have page limits. In this and the next few blog posts, I will share what I wrote. If you read these, it might give you a better idea of what I do at my current and previous jobs and what I would like to do in a future job. Here’s a one page limit statement on my teaching interests and experience. It won’t be one page on my blog because of formatting differences, of course, but it will be brief than I like. Continue reading

Recommended: To combat physician burnout and improve care, fix the electronic health record

This article is a nice counterbalance to all the glowing reports about how moving to the electronic health record is going to revolutionize health care. This effort certainly has value, but it comes at a cost. The article talks about the improvements needed to the crude 1990s interface and how to avoid overburdening the medical record with extraneous data. Continue reading

PMean: Starting a heron-i2b2-analytics repository

I am working on a CTSA grant to develop repeatable downstream pipelines that directly access i2b2 and CDM. In order to promote this work and encourage others to participate, I was given a repository site on github, kumc-bmi/heron-i2b2-analytics. Right now, it is just a shell, but here’s what I want to do with it, short term and long term. Continue reading