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Linear models are central to the theory and practice of modern statistics. They are used to model a response as a linear combination of explanatory variables and are the most widely used statistical models in practice. Starting with examples from a range of application areas this subject develops an elegant unified theory that includes the estimation of model parameters, quadratic forms, hypothesis testing using analysis of variance, model selection, diagnostics on model assumptions, and prediction. Both full rank models and models that are not of full rank are considered. The theory is illustrated using common models and experimental designs.
Intended learning outcomes
On completion of this subject students should be able to
- Understand the underlying statistical theory of linear models and the limitations of such models;
- Fit linear models to data using a standard statistical computing package and interpret the results.
In addition to learning specific skills that will assist students in their future careers in science, they will have the opportunity to develop generic skills that will assist them in any future career path. These include
- problem-solving skills: the ability to engage with unfamiliar problems and identify relevant solution strategies;
- analytical skills: the ability to construct and express logical arguments and to work in abstract or general terms to increase the clarity and efficiency of analysis;
- time-management skills: the ability to meet regular deadlines while balancing competing commitments;
- computer skills: the ability to use statistical computing packages.
Last updated: 22 November 2023