Enrollment year
Academic year
Academic discipline
Year of study
1st semester (01/10/2019 - 14/01/2020)
Lesson hours
48 lesson hours
Activity type
VILLANI SIMONA (titolare) - 6 ECTS
The course of Biostatistics and methodology of research is an essential part of is an essential part of the Biotechnologist's training who will have to carry out own activity in the field of biomedical research. To best follow the course the student must have acquired an adequate mathematical and statistical preparation..
Learning outcomes
The course aims to develop the knowledge and comprehension of the elements for a correct planning and conduct of research in the health field, developing the ability to correctly apply the tools for the assessment of health phenomena and risk assessment.
At the end of the course the students will have acquired the skills to write a research protocol, identify the key steps to independently conduct a study in the biomedical field, analyze the information gathered and comment on the results.
Course contents
The program of course is composed by two part.

1st Part: methodology of research (16 hours)
Experimental, experimental and observational epidemiological studies: starting points.
How to ensure the validity of a study:
- definition of bias
- role of bias
- bias control.
The protocol of experimental research on human and animals: which are the essential points and how to lay it out.
The protocol of observational case-control study and cohort study.
Overview of the regulations on the Ethical Boards.

2nd Part: Biostatistics (32 hours)
1. Introduction to Excel use.

2. Descriptive statistics:
- how compute and interpreter the main descriptive statistics for quantitative variables
- pivot tables for one variable or crossing two variables
- correlation coefficient
- graphics

3. Inferential statistics:
- Parametric unpaired and paired t-test.
- Test on homogeneity of variance.
- Oneway analysis of variance.
- Chi-squared test.
- Linear regression model
- non parametric test.
Teaching methods
The teaching activity includes theoretical lectures and practical exercises applied to questions research to help the students in acquiring the skills necessary for planning new studies, conducting the statistical analyses, developing in them the critical sense.
During practical lectures, students will be introduced to statistical analyses using Excel tool.
Reccomended or required readings
- MC Whitlock, D Schluter. Analisi statistica dei dati biologici. Zanichelli (with elements both of Research Methodology and Biostatistics)
- Triola, Triola. Fondamenti di Statistica per le discipline biomediche. Pearson, 2017 (with elements both of Research Methodology and Biostatistics)
- Daniel, Cross. Biostatistica. III Edizione 2019. (with elements of Biostatistics).

For the applied statistics in Excel:
- Villani, Borrelli – EXCEL & Statistica Medica. Quaderni di Epidemiologia – Medea 2013.

Additional material for individual study will be uploaded to the Kiro platform.
Assessment methods
The final examination is composed by written and oral test with problem solving approach. Only if 18/30 is achieved in the written test, it is possible to make the oral section. The result of the written part contributes for 67% to the final grade, while that of oral examination contributes for 33%.
In the written part using laptop, the student must demonstrate not only the ability to know and apply the correct techniques of analysis (knowledge and skills), but to be able to interpret the results obtained and communicate in a scientifically correct way the evidence found (competence).
In the oral examination which follows the written one, the student must demonstrate to have acquired both the adequate theoretical knowledge underlying the planning of a research protocol and the ability to write (knowledge and skills) and / or critically evaluate (competence) a research protocol applying it to the assigned project work at the end of lessons.
The examination will be divide in two distinct part contributing with a different weight to the final written and performed using personal computer (problem solving approach).
Further information
The plan of the course is based on practical section using personal computer. So to each student is required to have a laptop with Excel.
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