This paper is from Session 10F: Statistics education in South America
Full topic list
which comes under Topic 10: An international perspective on statistics education

(Friday 16th, 14:00-16:00)

Teaching statistics to physicians: a five-years experience



Physicians are often exposed to papers and academic theses that involve complex statistical analyses. Due to the development of computational facilities, they are able to produce many pvalues, but rarely are worried about the adequacy of the methods employed. Even though, there is a big demand for statistical courses among medical researchers and postgraduate students who are interested in perform their own analyses and better understanding scientific papers. In this context, traditional courses in which students are required to compute standard deviations or search critical values in theoretical distributions tables do not make sense. The biggest challenge on teaching statistics to postgraduate students in medicine is to focus on interpretation from a practical point of view without forget or put the theory in second place. This paper describes some difficulties and alternative methods to teach statistics that have been used in introductory courses at a public university and a private hospital.