Dr. Mark Gardener


Statistics for Ecologists Edition 2 Cover
Available now from
Pelagic Publishing

Statistics for Ecologists Using R and Excel (Edition 2)

Data Collection, Exploration, Analysis and Presentation

by: Mark Gardener

Available from Pelagic Publishing

Welcome to the support pages for Statistics for Ecologists. These pages provide information and support material for the book. You should be able to find an outline and table of contents as well as support datafiles and additional material.

Overview | Outline and TOC | Example data | Exercises and supplementary notes

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This is a book about the scientific process and how you apply it to data in ecology. You will learn how to plan for data collection, how to assemble data, how to analyze data and finally how to present the results. The book uses Microsoft Excel and the powerful Open Source R program to carry out data handling as well as producing graphs.

Statistics help you make sense of data, which is generated in all branches of science. Ecology is a wide-ranging and important science, which helps our understanding of the natural world.

Who this book is for

Students of ecology and environmental science will find this book aimed at them although many other scientists will find the text useful as the principles and data analysis are the same in many disciplines. No prior knowledge is assumed and the reader can develop their skills up to degree level.

What you will learn from this book

  • How to plan ecological projects.
  • How to record and assemble your data.
  • How to use Excel for data analysis and graphs.
  • How to use R for data analysis and graphs.
  • How to carry out a wide range of statistical analyses including analysis of variance and regression.
  • How to create professional looking graphs.
  • How to present your results.

What's new in Edition 2

  • Completely revised chapter on graphics.
  • Chapter on basic community statistics, biodiversity and similarity.
  • Chapter summaries.
  • End of chapter exercises

How the book is arranged

The book follows the theme of the scientific process and is split into four broad themes:

  • Planning
  • Data Recording
  • Data Exploration
  • Reporting Results

The sections are rather uneven in size and focus on the analysis side somewhat. The section on reporting also covers presentation of analyses (e.g. graphs). Although the emphasis is on ecological work and many of the data examples are of that sort, I hope that other scientists and students of other disciplines will see relevance to what they do.

Table of Contents

Outline and Table of Contents

Here are the main chapter headings:

List of chapter headings
  1. Planning
  2. Data recording
  3. Using software tools
  4. Looking at numbers
  1. Which analysis?
  2. Graphics
  3. Tests for differences
  4. Tests for correlation
  1. Association
  2. Differences with more than two samples
  3. Multiple regression
  4. Community analysis
  1. Presenting results
  2. Summary
Top Go to the Outline/TOC page for fuller details, including: main Chapter and Section headings along with a few notes about the contents of each chapter/section.

Example data resources:

S4E2e Archive Excel.zip


Example data

There are many data files used to demonstrate or illustrate various principles and analytical tasks. Some files are Excel (or CSV) and some are R-format. There are two archive files:

The Example Data support page gives more details about the data resources.

Exercises support page

Additional exercises and support notes that did not make it to the printed text


Exercises and supplementary notes

There are many items I would have liked to add to the text but which would have made the book too unwieldy. I decided it would be best to put these extra things onto the support website.

Some of the items are additional notes and information that relate to a particular topic. Others are more detailed exercises that you can follow using additional data.

The exercises support page gives some additional notes to help you see what each of the items are about.

Quick list of Exercises & Notes

Click the links to go direct to the exercise/notes. The main exercises support page contains additional notes about the exercises.

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Here is a list of keywords: it is by no means complete!

T-test, U-test, Kruskal-Wallis, Analysis of Variance, Spearman Rank, Correlation, Regression, Logistic Regression, Curved linear regression, histogram, scatter plot, bar chart, box-whisker plot, pie chart, Mean, Median, Mode, Standard Deviation, Standard Error, Range, Max, Min, Inter-quartile Range, IQR

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