Topic outline

  • General

    Statistical concepts for non-statisticians

    Lausanne, 16 January 2014

    Note: this course is targeted at members of the wider scientific community who must understand statistics, but who are unlikely to perform statistical analyses on their own; PhD students, postdocs and other researchers who have (or may have) data to analyze will benefit by following other courses provided by the SIB.


    Statistics are an integral part of scientific research, especially in the biomedical field. Understanding statistical results is of prime importance for both, people who actually perform the research work in a lab and the wider scientific community: group leaders, science journalists, investors, etc.

    The goal of this one-day course is to provide you with the skills you need to understand statistical results. It will cover the following topics: basic statistics to summarize data numerically and graphically; basic tools used in biomedical research: hypothesis tests, confidence intervals, correlation, etc; common pitfalls associated with these tools; probabilities, risks, rates and other measures; "Big data", promises and challenges.

    The course will not include any practical work (using statistical software to perform statistical analysis), but it will extensively rely on concrete examples.


    There is no prerequisite or requirements for this course. Participants are invited to submit in advance question of interest they may have on topics related to this course.

    Additional information

    • 50 CHF for members of the academic community and of the Swiss Association for Science Journalists
    • 200 CHF for other participants (in particular participants from the industry)

    The price includes course material, coffee breaks and lunch.


    The course will be taught by Frédéric Schütz, PhD. For more information, please contact


    The course is full.