Making sense of numbers and words: Statistical methods

Peter Grimbeek

Site Notes Contact details

Research methods, and statistical background

My statistical training is quantitative and experimental (University of Queensland PhD in Psychology - Evidence for orientation-contingent motion aftereffects - completed 1997).

Since 1999, I've worked for periods of time as a statistical advisor/research methodologist at Griffith University (School of Education, The Research Centre for Clinical and Community Practice Innovation [RCCCPI] and the Graduate Research School [GGRS]). I've also worked as a private statistical consultant at the University of New England (UNE) and University of Tasmania (UTAS).

While I'm interested in a range of research methods, over the years many of my clients have opted for survey based research. So, I've whiled away many an hour helping to design (demography, items, scales, instrument usability) and analyse surveys (Nonparametric analyses, parametric analyses, SEM, Optimal Scaling, Rasch item analysis). It's not surprising then that the stats blog includes rules of thumb on survey analysis.

I regularly use an automated text analysis tool, Leximancer, for conversation and text analysis.

I no longer do any teaching but did for some years teach the elements of research design to Master of Education and other postgraduate students, with a stress on relating methods to research strategies (positivist or post-positivist). I also taught mainly qualitative methods to Doctor of Education (EdD) students.

As well as teaching introductory statistics to Associate Professor Penny McKay's QUT English-as-a-second-language (ESL) Masters students for several years, I worked as private consultant on two of Penny's ESL-related ARC Linkage grant proposals. Penny was a good academic friend, and I'm pleased that subsequent to her death, the Penny McKay award in honour of Penny's contributions to language education is available to PhD candidates whose work is likely to benefit the teaching, learning and assessment of English as a second language.

I've contributed to a number of Eidos projects mainly to do with the labour market. I've contributed to a couple of successful applications for panel listings (DEEWR, NSW Health) and also the 2010 Eidos Green Paper. More recently, I've been a contributor to an Eidos Institute off-shoot, MindHive. MindHive operates as a platform that bring crowdsourcing to policy and strategy formulation.

Peter Grimbeek