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A statistical revolution is happening at Waikato


A statistical revolution is happening at Waikato University.

Dr Bill Bolstad, Senior Lecturer in the Statistics Department, believes he is closing the gap between what statistics students are taught and the tools increasingly used in practice, with the release of his new book: 'Introduction to Bayesian Statistics'.

The book is based on Dr Bolstads’ successful introductory paper on Bayesian Statistics at Waikato University. "Traditionally introductory statistics papers have been taught from a frequentist perspective," said Dr Bolstad.

"However, in recent years there has been an upsurge in the use of Bayesian methods in applied statistical data analysis. This increase highlights the need to introduce students early on to Bayesian methods, which use the laws of probability directly for inference via Bayes' theorem.

“Bayesian statistics is increasingly used in areas such as medical science, environmental modelling and large scale problems in science. Bayes procedures are more straightforward logically and generate more accurate results. Data collection and analysis costs, so the better performance gives you more value for your money," said Dr Bolstad.

The book is understandable to readers with a reasonable mathematics background and is published by John Wiley & Sons in New York. As well as being useful to undergraduate students, 'Introduction to Bayesian Statistics' serves as a self-study guide for research students and scientists wishing to analyze data using Bayesian methods and theories.

Already there has been interest from other universities keen to use Dr Bolstad's text.

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