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Unformatted text preview: Springer Texts in Statistics Series Editors: G. Casella S. Fienberg I. Olkin For other titles published in this series, go to http://www.springer.com/series/417 Peter D. Hoff A First Course in Bayesian Statistical Methods 123 Peter D. Hoff Department of Statistics University of Washington Seattle WA 981954322 USA hoff@stat.washington.edu ISSN 1431875X ISBN 9780387922997 eISBN 9780387924076 DOI 10.1007/9780387924076 Springer Dordrecht Heidelberg London New York Library of Congress Control Number: 2009929120 c Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009 All rights reserved. This work may not be translated or copied in whole or in part without the written permission of the publisher (Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, 233 Spring Street, New York, NY10013, USA), except for brief excerpts in connection with reviews or scholarly analysis. Use in connection with any form of information storage and retrieval, electronic adaptation, computer software, or by similar or dissimilar methodology now known or hereafter developed is forbidden. The use in this publication of trade names, trademarks, service marks, and similar terms, even if they are not identified as such, is not to be taken as an expression of opinion as to whether or not they are subject to proprietary rights. Printed on acidfree paper Springer is part of Springer Science+Business Media (www.springer.com) Preface This book originated from a set of lecture notes for a onequarter graduate level course taught at the University of Washington. The purpose of the course is to familiarize the students with the basic concepts of Bayesian theory and to quickly get them performing their own data analyses using Bayesian com putational tools. The audience for this course includes nonstatistics graduate students who did well in their departments graduatelevel introductory statis tics courses and who also have an interest in statistics. Additionally, first and secondyear statistics graduate students have found this course to be a useful introduction to statistical modeling. Like the course, this book is intended to be a selfcontained and compact introduction to the main concepts of Bayesian theory and practice. By the end of the text, readers should have the ability to understand and implement the basic tools of Bayesian statistical methods for their own data analysis purposes. The text is not intended as a comprehen sive handbook for advanced statistical researchers, although it is hoped that this latter category of readers could use this book as a quick introduction to Bayesian methods and as a preparation for more comprehensive and detailed studies. Computing Monte Carlo summaries of posterior distributions play an important role in the way data analyses are presented in this text. My experience has been that once a student understands the basic idea of posterior sampling, their data analyses quickly become more creative and meaningful, using relevant posterior predictive distributions and interesting functions of parameters. Theposterior predictive distributions and interesting functions of parameters....
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