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Behavioural data analysis using maximum likelihood in R (BDML02)

4th November 2019 - 8th November 2019

£275.00 - £560.00

Course Overview:

This 5-day course will involve a combination of lectures and practical sessions. Students will learn to build and fit custom models for analysing behavioural data using maximum likelihood techniques in R. This flexible approach allows a researcher to a) use a statistical model that directly represents their hypothesis, in cases where standard models are not appropriate and b) better understand how standard statistical models (e.g. GLMs) are fitted, many of which are fitted by maximum likelihood. Students will learn how to deal with binary, count and continuous data, including time-to-event data which is commonly encountered in behavioural analysis.

After successfully completing this course students should be able to:

  • fit a multi-parameter maximum likelihood model in R
  • derive likelihood functions for binary, count and continuous data
  • deal with time-to-event data
  • build custom models to test specific behavioural hypotheses
  • conduct hypothesis tests and construct confidence intervals
  • use Akaike’s information criterion (AIC) and model averaging
  • understand how maximum likelihood relates to Bayesian techniques

Intended Audience

Any researchers (from postgraduate students to senior investigators) interested in analysing behavioural data. Examples will be primarily from non-human animal behaviour studies, but the methods will also be applicable to many researchers studying human behaviour. The course is intended for those wishing to construct custom statistical models and for those wishing to better understand the workings of standard statistical techniques that use maximum likelihood methods (e.g. GLMs).

Venue – PS statistics head office, 53 Cook Street, Glasgow, G5 8LB – Google map

Availability – 30 places

Duration – 5 days

Contact hours – Approx. 35 hours

ECT’s – Equal to 3 ECT’s

Language – English


• COURSE WITH FREE ACCOMMODATION – includes everything listed below (only eligible for persons in academia)
• COURSE ONLY – Includes lunch and refreshments.
• ACCOMMODATION PACKAGE (to be purchased in addition to the course only option) – Includes breakfast, lunch, refreshments and welcome dinner Monday evening. Self-catering facilities are available in the accommodation. Accommodation is approximately a 6-minute walk from the PS statistics head office. Accommodation is multiple occupancy (max 3-4 people) single sex en-suite rooms. Arrival Sunday 3rd November (after 5pm) and departure Friday 8th November (accommodation must be vacated by 9am).

Other payment options are available please email oliverhooker@psstatistics.com

PLEASE READ – CANCELLATION POLICY: Cancellations are accepted up to 28 days before the course start date subject to a 25% cancellation fee. Cancellations later than this may be considered, contact oliverhooker@psstatistics.com. Failure to attend will result in the full cost of the course being charged. In the unfortunate event that a course is cancelled due to unforeseen circumstances a full refund of the course fees (and accommodation fees if booked through PR statistics) will be credited. However, PS statistics will not be held responsible/liable for any travel fees, accommodation costs or other expenses incurred to you as a result of the cancellation. Because of this PS statistics strongly recommends any travel and accommodation that is booked by you or your institute is refundable/flexible and to delay booking your travel and accommodation as close the course start date as economical viable.


Dr. William Hoppitt


Teaching Format
Course Programme


4th November 2019
8th November 2019
£275.00 - £560.00


PS statistics head office
53 Morrison Street
Glasgow, Scotland, G5 8LB United Kingdom
+ Google Map