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Header of the course Introduction to Ecological Data Analysis - 2nd Edition


Organising committee



Date and Site


Course length and ECTS


Number of places







Registration Form


Course Poster


Introduction to Ecological Data Analysis
In this course we will cover the most important subjects in univariate and multivariate statistics from a very practical perspective, with real data sets and realistic problem solving. We will give a practical introduction to multivariate community analysis, spatial and time series analysis as applied to ecological, environmental and geological data.

At the course participants will learn to address questions such as geographical distribution of communities, interactions between communities and their physical environment, ecological change through time in response to sudden or gradual environmental change (pollution, climate), and patterns of diversity.

We will use the free and friendly Past software (written by the lecturer), but the methods are equally relevant for users of other programs. We will discuss not only the practicalities of statistics, but also the limitations of statistical testing, demonstrated by example.


Dr. Øyvind Hammer instructor at Transmitting Science
Dr. Øyvind Hammer
(University of Oslo, Norway).

Organising committee:

Dr. Soledad De Esteban-Trivigno course coordinator at Transmitting Science
Dr. Soledad De Esteban-Trivigno

(Transmitting Science, Spain).
Dr. Judit Marigó course coordinator at Transmitting Science
Dr. Judit Marigó

(Muséum national d’Histoire naturelle, France; and Institut Català de Paleontologia Miquel Crusafont (ICP), Spain).


Basic knowledge of statistics. All participants must bring their own personal laptop (Windows).



Date and Site:

Torre del Senyor Enric (Els Hostalets de Pierola, Barcelona, Spain)

Monday 3rd to Friday 7th October 2016.

Premises of the Centre de Restauració i Interpretació Paleontològic (CRIP), Av. dels Hostalets de Pierola, s/ nº, 08781 Els Hostalets de Pierola, Barcelona (Spain) GPS Coordinates: Latitude 41.533525 (41° 32’ 0.6891’’N), Longitude 1.770949 (1° 46’ 15.415’’E). How to arrive.


Monday 3rd October 2016.

- Introduction to statistics: Samples and populations, descriptive statistics, mean and variance. Distributions. Purpose and limitations of statistical testing.

- Testing for difference: Two-sample tests, multiple-sample tests.

    • Practice with software.


Tuesday 4th October 2016.

- Counted data: Contingency tables.

- Are things connected? Correlation, regression and curve fitting.

    • Practice with software.

- Several variables: Multivariate tests (MANOVA). Discovering structure (PCA).

    • Practice with software.


Wednesday 5th October 2016.

- Comparing communities: Distance measures.

- Looking for groups: Cluster analysis. UPGMA, Neighbour Joining.

    • Practice with software.

- Plotting community data: Ordination. Principal Coordinates Analysis, NMDS, Correspondence Analysis, CCA.

    • Practice with software.


Thursday 6th October 2016.

- Testing community data: ANOSIM, PerMANOVA, Mantel test.

    • Practice with software.

- Diversity measures and testing, rarefaction.

    • Practice with software.



Friday 7th October 2016.

- The study of geographical distributions (spatial data): Spatial autocorrelation, semivariograms, gridding, point pattern analysis, directional analysis.

    • Practice with software.

- Change through time (time series): Trend, autocorrelation, spectral analysis, wavelets, filtering.

    • Practice with software.


Course length and ECTS:

36 hours on-site. This course is equivalent to 4 ECTS (European Credit Transfer System). Participants who have completed the course will receive a certificate at the end of it.


Sunday 2nd October 2016:

19:00 Meeting point in Plaza Catalunya (Barcelona) to take the bus to Els Hostalets de Pierola. If you are planning to arrive later, you can find more information in How to arrive.
20:00 Registration in the Youth Hostel.
20:30 Dinner.

Monday 3rd to Thursday 6th October 2016:

8:00 to 9:00 Breakfast.
9:30 to 13:30 Lessons.
13:30 to 15:00 Lunch.
15:00 to 19:00 Lessons.
20:30 Dinner.

  • There will be two coffee breaks each day, halfway through each lesson session.

Friday 7th October 2016:

8:00 to 9:00 Breakfast.
9:30 to 13:30
13:30 to 15:00
Meeting point in the Youth Hostel to take the bus to visit a wine cellar.

16:00 Arrival at the wine cellar.
17:30 Bus to Barcelona city.
19:00 Arrival at Plaza Catalunya (Barcelona).

  • There will be a coffee break during the morning lesson session.

The schedule is approximate; it is possible that the content of one day may run into the next and a working day may be longer than advertised.

Number of places:

Places are limited to 18 participants and will be occupied by strict registration order.


Reduced registration fee until March 31, 2016: 490 €. Full registration fee after March 31, 2016: 685 €. This includes course material, coffee breaks and lunches.

Former participants will have a 5 % discount** on the current course fee. Discounts are applied only on the fee, not to lodging or other options (see All Inclusive option below in Accommodation section).

We offer the possibility of paying in two instalments (contact us at coursests@transmittingscience.org).

Please complete and submit your Registration Form (see below); we will confirm your acceptance by e-mail. If you do not receive any confirmation by e-mail after registration, please contact us at coursests@transmittingscience.org.

Cancellation policy:

If you wish to cancel your participation in this course, cancellations up to 20 days before the course start date will incur a 30 % cancellation fee. For later cancellations, or non-attendance, 75 % of the fee will be charged.

If Transmitting Science must cancel this course due to unforeseen circumstances beyond the control of Transmitting Science, you will either be entitled to a full refund of the course fee, or your fee can be credited toward a future course / workshop. Transmitting Science is not responsible for travel fees, or any expenses incurred by you as a result of such cancellation. Every effort will be made to avoid the cancellation of any planned course / workshop.


The course will take place in the town of Els Hostalets de Pierola, Barcelona (Spain).

Youth Hostel Can Roviralta (Els Hostalets de Pierola, Barcelona, Spain)

- All Inclusive option:
We offer this option that covers all of the expenses for the week; it includes transport to and from Barcelona city, lodging, breakfasts, dinners and a visit to a wine cellar. This costs 300 €.
Participants will be hosted in the Youth Hostel Can Roviralta, in shared dormitories (common bathrooms), although you will only share rooms with other classmates. The possibility exists that the dormitories will be mixed. Therefore, if this is an inconvenience for you, and you require staying in a dormitory with only women, or only men, please indicate so in the “Comments” field of the Registration Form (see below).
A supplemental charge will be added if you prefer to stay in a single room with private bathroom. The number of rooms is limited and if you prefer to have a single room, let us know it as soon as possible. If you want more information on this please contact us at coursests@transmittingscience.org.
Please be aware that from the centre of Barcelona city it takes about one hour by car and one hour and a half by public transport to arrive to Els Hostalets de Pierola. Course attendees will find that staying in Els Hostalets de Pierola is more convenient.

- Other Options:
If you do not want the All Inclusive option, accommodation is available in places other than Els Hostalets de Pierola. You may stay in Barcelona city, Martorell or Igualada. You will find information about Hotels in Martorell here, and information about Hotels in Igualada here. Both Martorell and Igualada are located about 45 minutes by train from Els Hostalets de Pierola, while it takes about one hour and a half by public transport to arrive to Els Hostalets de Pierola from the centre of Barcelona city.
How to arrive to Els Hostalets de Pierola from Barcelona city, Martorell and Igualada.


Unfortunately there are no internal grants available for this course. However some discounts are offered to people belonging to some of the Associations, Institutions or Universities listed here. If you want to apply to this discount please state the name of your Association, Institution or University in the “Comments” field of the Registration Form (proof will be asked later).

Spanish unemployed scientists, as well as Spanish PhD students without any grant to develop their PhD, could benefit from a 40 % discount** on the course fee. If you want to ask for this discount, please contact us at coursests@transmittingscience.org. That would apply for a maximum of 2 places and they will be covered by strict inscription order.


For further information contact: coursests@transmittingscience.org.


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Registration Form

  • Do you need an invitation letter for processing a visa?
    (list of countries in which visa is required to visit Spain).
  • Are you going to validate the course in any research PhD School or doctorate?
  • At which University / Postgraduate School / PhD School?


** Discounts are not cumulative.