When Should I Start Working with a Statistician?

I would like to emphasize that the sooner you start working with a statistician during the development of your proposal, the smoother things will go for you. Once you have a topic and you have done some preliminary literature review is an ideal time to start working with a statistician.

So many of my clients come to me only after multiple rewrites of the problem statement, research questions, data analysis plan etc. They could have saved themselves a lot of time, money and frustration by contacting a statistician sooner.

In addition, many of my clients come to me only after they fully approved proposal. Often times, a proposal is accepted even though the statistics are not clearly written and sometimes, their statistics are just plain wrong. This can happen if you don’t have someone with an advanced degree in statistics on your committee. When that happens, I am unable to do the analysis for them unless we first redo the statistics in the methods chapter.

Another thing that happens is, the student comes to me with a fully approved proposal and they want help with the analysis. The statistical aspects of their methodology are correct, but unnecessarily complicated that I am unable to help them due to the scope of the project being so large I could not fit the work into my schedule, nor could I do the work for an affordable price.

These are some of the reasons why you want to work with a statistician early in the development of your proposal.

My Proposal has been accepted, can you analyze my results?

Probably, but many doctoral students do not have an “actual statistician” on their committee. The methodologist on your committee surely has more experience with statistics than your other committee members, but that is very different than having someone with an advanced degree in statistics and 14 years or more of experience as a statistical consultant on your committee. The point is, I have seen many committee-approved dissertation proposals that have research questions that do not lend themselves well to statistical analysis.

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I Tried to Analyze my Data Myself, Can You Review my Results?

I have had a number of doctoral students call me with a question something like this: I purchased the student version of SPSS. I was able to calculate the mean and the frequency and percent for my variables, and I even tried to compare my independent and dependent variables with an ANOVA, but I don’t know if I did it right. Would you please review my work and see if I did it right?

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How Does Statistical Consulting Work?

I have helped hundreds of doctoral students in developing their research questions, hypotheses, survey design, data analysis plan, power analysis and sample size justification, and performing the statistical analysis of their data.

My clients receive a clearly written report that demonstrates how to interpret and report the results “AND” they receive unlimited email and phone support to answer any questions they might have, to ensure that they completely understand their statistics.

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Choosing a Statistical Consultant

In choosing a statistical consultant, ask yourself the following questions:

1) Does my consultant have a graduate degree in statistics?

2) Is statistical consulting for doctoral students their fulltime job, or is this something they do in the evenings and the weekends when they have time?

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