Year of Publication

2018

College

Public Health

Degree Name

Master of Public Health (M.P.H.)

Committee Chair

Dr. Heather Bush

Committee Member

Dr. Kristen McQuerry

Committee Member

Dr. Philip Westgate

Abstract

The following portfolio is an overview of my consulting experience in public health. My experiences include making frequency tables, producing summary statistics, conducting Chi- Square and T-Test, and reproducing a demographics table. Working with investigators, I have conducted a power analysis for a pilot study, assisted with a study design consultation, used the Kappa coefficient to test for inter-rater reliability, presented survey results with answer distributions, and produced summary statistics for an investigator’s research poster.

Working in the Applied Statistics Laboratory and with investigators has taught me the process of consulting. It begins by meeting with an investigator and determining their research needs. This can be many things, including study design, data management, and data analysis. Some investigators come with data and a study design already in place, while others will come to the Applied Statistics Laboratory for each step of the project, from the beginning to end. After determining an investigator’s needs and at what point they are in their research, members of the Applied Statistics Laboratory are assigned tasks to assist investigators with their research. In addition to data management and study design, data analysis is often conducted so investigators can receive a report to use for their research results.

Being a part of the Applied Statistics Laboratory and assisting with consultations gave me the opportunity to improve my programming skills. As seen in this portfolio, I wrote numerous SAS programs and utilized various procedures and statements, including higher-level programming with SAS Macros. I also had the opportunity to obtain real-world practice conducting data management and data analysis. An important part of working with investigators was learning how to interpret statistical output, which is found in the “Critical Thinking” portions of each project in this portfolio. In the lab I also had the opportunity to follow up with investigators and produce reports which displays data in a form that is useful to the investigator, such as tables and graphs. The final page of my portfolio includes a poster made by an investigator I worked with. She utilized tables and graphs which I produced in her results section.

I enjoyed my consulting experience in public health and plan to use many of the skills I learned in consulting in the future. I expect to use the numerous SAS skills I learned at my future job, along with what I have learned about study design, data management, and data analysis.

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Public Health Commons

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