13a-DataAnalCausalInf-1

13a-DataAnalCausalInf-1 - Principles of Epidemiology for...

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4/12/2011 Data analysis and causal inference 1 Data analysis and causal inference – 1 Victor J. Schoenbach, PhD home page Department of Epidemiology Gillings School of Global Public Health University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill www.unc.edu/epid600/ Principles of Epidemiology for Public Health (EPID600)
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12/30/2001 Data analysis and causal inference 2 The Physicist, the Chemist, and the Statistician From “Science Jokes”, posted to Usenet groups by Joachim Verhagen ([email protected]); downloaded from, Keith M. Gregg, [email protected], www-leland.stanford.edu/~keithg/humor.shtml “Three professors (a physicist, a chemist, and a statistician) are called in to see their dean. Just as they arrive the dean is called out of his office, leaving the three professors there. The professors see with alarm that there is a fire in the wastebasket.
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12/30/2001 Data analysis and causal inference 3 The Physicist, the Chemist, and the Statistician From “Science Jokes”, posted to Usenet groups by Joachim Verhagen ([email protected]); downloaded from, Keith M. Gregg, [email protected], www-leland.stanford.edu/~keithg/humor.shtml “The physicist says, ‘I know what to do! We must cool down the materials until their temperature is lower than the ignition temperature and then the fire will go out.’
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12/30/2001 Data analysis and causal inference 4 The Physicist, the Chemist, and the Statistician From “Science Jokes”, posted to Usenet groups by Joachim Verhagen ([email protected]); downloaded from, Keith M. Gregg, [email protected], www-leland.stanford.edu/~keithg/humor.shtml “The chemist says, ‘No! No! I know what to do! We must cut off the supply of oxygen so that the fire will go out due to lack of one of the reactants.’
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12/30/2001 Data analysis and causal inference 5 The Physicist, the Chemist, and the Statistician From “Science Jokes”, posted to Usenet groups by Joachim Verhagen ([email protected]); downloaded from, Keith M. Gregg, [email protected], www-leland.stanford.edu/~keithg/humor.shtml “While the physicist and chemist debate what course to take, they both are alarmed to see the statistician running around the room starting other fires. They both scream, ‘What are you doing?’ To which the statistician replies, ‘Trying to get an adequate sample size.’”
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12/30/2001 Data analysis and causal inference 6 Data management Managing epidemiologic data is “mass production” A systematic, organized, professional approach is critical for detecting and avoiding problems
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12/30/2001 Data analysis and causal inference 7 “You can never, never take anything for granted.” Noel Hinners, vice president for flight systems at Lockheed Martin Astronautics, whose engineering team reported measurements in English units that the Mars Climate Orbiter navigation team assumed were metric units.
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12/30/2001 Data analysis and causal inference 8 Without the documentation, the data may be of little if any value (1995 NSFG) 00000000000003122222222402143041000 00000000000001144112131 070520310 00000000000003233112131 072331040 000000000000011163322227070350110 00000000000003133022221 02451121000 00000000000001111112131 02110041000 00000000000002111112131 07307131000 00000000000002122112131 01073041000
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12/30/2001 Data analysis and causal inference 9
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13a-DataAnalCausalInf-1 - Principles of Epidemiology for...

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