Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



First Advisor

Jessica Ketchum


Standard statistical decision-making tools, such as inference, confidence intervals and forecasting, are contingent on the assumption that the statistical model used in the analysis is the true model. In linear mixed-effect models, ignoring model uncertainty results in an underestimation of the residual variance, contributing to hypothesis tests that demonstrate larger than nominal Type-I errors and confidence intervals with smaller than nominal coverage probabilities. A novel utilization of the generalized degrees of freedom developed by Zhang et al. (2012) is used to adjust the estimate of the residual variance for model uncertainty. Additionally, the general global linear approximation is extended to linear mixed-effect models to adjust the standard errors of the parameter estimates for model uncertainty. Both of these methods use a perturbation method for estimation, where random noise is added to the response variable and, conditional on the observed responses, the corresponding estimate is calculated. A simulation study demonstrates that when the proposed methodologies are utilized, both the variance and standard errors are inflated for model uncertainty. However, when a data-driven strategy is employed, the proposed methodologies show limited usefulness. These methods are evaluated with a trial assessing the performance of cervical traction in the treatment of cervical radiculopathy.


© The Author

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

February 2013

Included in

Biostatistics Commons