A public lecture on “Misuse of Statistics in Research” was held at the College of Natural Sciences (CNS) on 11 May 2018. The public lecture was made by Dr. Shibru Temesgen, an Associate Professor of Statistics at Addis Ababa University.
In his lecture, Dr. Shibru, listed and discussed in depth various common statistical misuses which the researchers often commit in the process of their research undertaking right from research design through data collection/generation, handling, analysis and interpretation.
The contents of the lecture largely focused on (natural) science disciplines and the major issues included misuses related to measurement and data scaling, biased samples and sample size, erroneous range and scaling of graphs, false causality, over generalization, erroneous multivariate data reductions and regression models, and confusing statistical significance with practical significance among others. Underscoring the significant effects of such statistical misuses on the precision and validity of research findings, Dr. Shibru provided list of recommendations/countermeasures that the researchers should take into account while designing and executing their research works.
The 2-hour public lecture was attended by senior staff, staff with active research projects and postgraduate students of the College and other sister Colleges in the University. Interactive discussions and reflections were held on issues raised from the audience at the end of the lecture. The contribution such public lecture or scientific presentation could have in improving the quality of research outputs was appreciated. Finally, the College Research and Postgraduate Coordinating Office extended its due gratitude to Dr. Shibru for his professional contribution at Jimma University, as well as the audience for their interest to attend the lecture.