» » Discovering Statistics Using R

Download Discovering Statistics Using R epub

by Andy Field,Jeremy Miles

Download Discovering Statistics Using R epub
ISBN: 1446200450
ISBN13: 978-1446200452
Category: Science
Subcategory: Mathematics
Author: Andy Field,Jeremy Miles
Language: English
Publisher: SAGE Publications Ltd; 1 edition (April 4, 2012)
Pages: 992 pages
ePUB size: 1187 kb
FB2 size: 1249 kb
Rating: 4.3
Votes: 257
Other Formats: mobi mbr docx txt

Andy Field simply has a way with making a scary subject- statistics (dare I say it) fun.

This book is an excellent step-by-step guide that a beginner will feel comfortable with, but also serves as a great reference for someone like me, who has a background in stats. More importantly, it shows how to perform various statistical analyses using R - which is a great & highly in demand skill. When you buy this book, you have access to example data sets and supplemental material - it's as if Andy is there to help you along the way. If you are freaked out about learning stats, or feel like you don't understand the theory behind how the tests work and when you should perform certain ones, then this book is you.

Admittedly, I'm a nerd, so the fact that I actually do enjoy reading the chapters and working the examples might be biased. It's possible that the general population might disagree with me. I do, however, think that Andy's sense of humor and clear examples, rather than my own nerdiness, explains more unique variance in predicting why I so highly recommend this book. Even if you're dreading learning stats, I think this book will show you how much fun it can be- or at least that you don't have to be a math wiz to get the basic concepts. Five stars all the way!
I purchased this book in order to answer some stats questions surrounding my research because I've nearly forgotten all of what I learned from the one undergrad stats course I took yeas ago. Having worked through several chapters of the book, I was inclined to write a review for several reasons:
1) it's a great value - it begins with very basic stats and goes through mixed model analysis. Given it costs about $80 new, this is an exceptional value in terms of breadth of content.

2) it's taught in the context of R - IMO, statistics ought to be taught in the context of how one will actually carry out the modeling calculations; it is done this way throughout the book.

3) the binding is nice and the online material is easily accessible.

4) Andy does a good job with introducing the (sometimes quirky) nature of R.

5) While the depth of content may be too shallow for complicated problems (it's not a theory book by any means), this is made up for by the inclusion of "further reading" at the end of each chapter where Andy lists and explains why each resource was selected and what he believes it best explains. I used this when diving into mixed model repeated measure ANOVAs.
Andy Field writes some of the most intuitive and entertaining accounts of statistics available, and this book is no exception to that standard. This book is geared towards those who want to start from the beginning and progress through a complete account of the most common methods in statistics based on the general linear model. If you are a beginner, this is one of the best places to start. If you are experienced, this book is a great reference to have around.

The most enjoyable aspect of this book, aside from its humor, is that Field addresses issues of using robust statical methods when assumptions are not met in the data. Instead of glossing over the issues, Field provides the most recent findings in the field and even examples of how to run robust tests in R. However, note if you want to do something very complicated with robust methods, this book is not a cure all, and you would be hard pressed to find one that is.

With regards to R, this book will get you up and running with R even if you have no previous experience with R or programming languages in general. However, a few of the R libraries have changed since this edition's publication, so you will need to search a bit to fix a few errors, but it's not hard and is good practice.

Finally, I must mention that Andy Field has gone out of his way to provide datasets and examples like no other author I have encountered. The book has a companion website full of these datasets and all of the R scripts used in the book. Additionally, the companion website is packed full of extra material for each chapter in the book. Finally, Field has several videos posted to the website which includes a lecture series on statistics.
As introductory textbook to classical/frequentist statistics, this book could be useful, especially for readers who desire lengthy explanatory vignettes and are unwilling to invest the effort to learn programming. Still, I do not recommend this book for most. Despite the title, it does not effectively teach the R language. I believe it is a mistake to learn statistics without simultaneously developing programming skills, and the author's use of R is rudimentary at best. Your favorite spreadsheet program or point-and-click stats software can crunch T tests just as well as R, and so the programming novice who reads this book may well ask why they should be pulling out their hair struggling to make code work in R, when the examples in the book would work just as easily in Excel or SPSS.

I purchased this book as well as The Book of R: A First Course in Programming and Statistics, and highly recommend the latter. With the Davies book I was able to acquire a basic competency in R code, and then learn statistics using my newfound programming knowledge. Many of the examples and exercises utilize R programming to solve problems that are impractical/impossible with commercial statistical software.

- Good explanations of fundamental topics like ANOVA
- Examples that address the common dilemma of which particular test or model to use
- Lots of examples/vignettes to frame each chapter and give context
- Quirky, personal writing style may appeal to some

- Pages started falling out literally the first time I opened the brand-new book
- Verbose; almost every page is riddled with irrelevant personal anecdotes
- Writing is often bizarrely risqué; seems every chapter has multiple references to male sexual function
- Not a good introduction to R programming (see above)