Document Type

Article

Original Publication Date

2016

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Australian & New Zealand Journal of Statistics

Volume

58

Issue

3

First Page

319

Last Page

333

DOI of Original Publication

10.1111/anzs.12167

Comments

Originally published at http://doi.org/10.1111/anzs.12167.

Date of Submission

January 2017

Abstract

An effective method for improving the communication skills of graduate students in statistics and biostatistics is to provide consultations with non-statistical researchers. Unfortunately, those experiences can be difficult to arrange or occur too infrequently to be reliable. The current study sought to help students develop both written and oral communication skills within an existing graduate biostatistics course by having students partake in role-playing consultations. Though the class size was small, the students felt these activities helped improve their oral and written communication skills, and made them more aware of a biostatistician's role in consulting. There was also modest improvement in the students perceived function as a consulting biostatistician. Simulated consultations can be an effective educational tool for promoting the development of soft skills necessary for developing successful statisticians, can be implemented in existing courses, and do not require reliance upon external collaborators. Embedding these types of exercises within an existing curriculum can also be a cost-effective alternative for programs that do not have formal consulting training.

Rights

© 2016 Australian Statistical Publishing Association Inc.

Is Part Of

VCU Biostatistics Publications

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