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Lost Person Behavior - Train-The-Trainer

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Fundamentals of SAR Statistics

Duration :Duration : 3 hours

:: Course Summary

This optional hands-on workshop offers an introduction to the fundamental principles and concepts in statistics used in Search and Rescue (SAR).

A fundamental part of Lost Person Behavior is using and understanding certain basic statistical concepts. In order to better teach Lost Person Behavior it is important for a potential instructor to understand the tables and statistical concepts presented. Many participants already come well prepared to discuss the statistics that are used in the course. Other participants can gain from this short workshop on SAR statistics.

The first part covers classical and more recent exploratory data analysis (EDA) techniques to describe data with numerical and graphical tools. Using actual SAR data the course will illustrate how common statistics used in SAR are obtained and what they actually mean.
The second part addresses, with the help of real-life examples, the principles underlying statistical testing and decision-making in the presence of uncertainty. It covers risks involved (alpha and beta), p-values and statistical significance. The use and interpretation of confidence intervals is also discussed.
This course can serve as an introductory class or a refresher and provides a solid basis for becoming better prepared to teach SAR courses.

:: Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Understand the difference between descriptive and inferential statistics
  • Explore and characterize and trends in data using graphical tools
  • Use descriptive statistics to summarize data
  • Analyze data more quickly and more accurately
  • Interpret results reliably and confidently

    :: Target Audience

    This applied training session in SAR statistics is aimed at SAR instructors or potential instructors who need a higher understanding of the statistics commonly used in Search and Rescue management.

    :: Prerequisite

    This course introduces the most basic concepts in statistics and data analysis. It assumes that participants either have no previous knowledge of statistics or that they have not used statistics for a long time.



    :: Topics Covered

    • Introduction to Statistics
    • Descriptive Data Analysis
      • Why Do we Need Statistics? Overview of Descriptive or Exploratory Data Analysis
      • Type and Role of Variables in Studies and Experiments
      • Visualizing and Summarizing Data: The Concept of a Distribution
      • Characterizing Distributions with Numerical and Graphical Tools: mean, median, standard deviation, standard error, histogram, Box-plot, etc.
      • Predicting distributions using standard deviations.  Why 95%
      • Exploring the Relationship between Two variables: Scatter Plots and Correlation Coefficients.
    • Statistical Inference or Statistical Testing
      • Overview: What is Statistical Inference?
      • Statistical Inference with Hypothesis Testing: null and alternative hypotheses, one-tailed vs. two-tailed tests, test statistics, p-value, statistical significance, decision rules
      • Bayesian Statistical approach, Monte Carlo Statistical approach
      • Statistical Inference with Confidence Intervals: how it works, when to use it
      • Equivalence of the Hypothesis Testing and the Confidence Interval Approaches
    • Summary

    :: Course Content

    This three-hour workshop reviews the most important basic concepts in statistics. It begins with an overview of the role of statistics in a decision-making process. The types and roles of variables are discussed along with tools for characterizing and summarizing variables and for exploring the relationship between them.
    Among the graphical tools presented for visualizing data are: the histogram, the box-plot and the scatter plot.

    :: Notes and Other Information

    The exact subject matter and content are subject to change as the workshop is further refined and improved. The additional fee for this course covers course material and dinner. This workshop is optional but highly recommended for those who do not feel comfortable discussing basic statistics.

    :: Pricing and Schedule

    The Fundamentals of SAR Statistics is now offered as a regular part of the Train-the-trainer workshop.



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