Tag Archives: Statistics

New and exciting course: Introduction to Statistical Paleobiology

Introduction to Statistical Paleobiology

Docent Lee Hsiang Liow, Centre for Ecological and Evolutionary Synthesis, University of Oslo

This master-level course is given by remote video except for the introductory and concluding lectures, for which Docent Liow will be physically present (in class room C108 in the Department of Geosciences and Geography, Physicum, Kumpula campus). The video lectures will be given in the video conference classroom Exactum A114.

The maximum attendance is 20. Please use Web Oodi to enroll.

Course outline:

Introductory Lecture (Sep 4 2013)
Introduce statistical paleobiology
Aims of course
Outline of lectures and assignments and introduction to first assignment


‐questions we ask in paleobiology
‐ the interconnectivity among biology, paleontology, geology and climate science
‐history of “quantitative paleobiology”
‐important figures
‐why quantification is important
‐what are models and why there are differences between mathematical and statistical models
‐the importance of models (and comparison to hypothesis testing)
‐why bother with confidence intervals (an illustration)

Lecture 1 (9 Sep Oslo)

Estimating extinction‐ singe taxa

Lecture 2 (11 Sep Oslo)

Estimating extinction‐ rates and “events”

Lecture 3 (16 Sep Oslo)

Phenotypic evolution – single lineages

Lecture 4 (18 Sep Oslo)

Phenotypic evolution – clades
Other possibilities: diversification (comparing paleo and phylo)
More CMR (a bit in Lecture 2)

Conclusion Lecture (2 Oct Helsinki)

Writing assignment
Writing a Wikipedia entry for a selected narrow paleobiology theme (non quantitative)

Each lecture will have associated R exercises