Introductory workshop, April 2021
Does the following describe your situation?
- Considering the use of distance sampling for population assessment?
- Wish to have individual attention learning to analyse distance sampling data sets?
- Curious about variants of distance sampling that may suit your specific goals?
- Interested in using R for your distance sampling analysis?
If so, consider taking the live online version of our distance sampling training.
Training in distance sampling design and analysis has been conducted in St Andrews for the past 25 years. In addition, training materials and video lectures were placed online in 2018 and have been visited by >12000 users in the past 3 years. We now offer these lectures, discussions and exercises in a new, interactive format, enabling participants to engage in lectures, conduct guided analyses of data sets and ask questions of the instructor.
The workshop instructor is Eric Rexstad
In April 2021, we will offer this workshop 12-23 April between the hours of 1500 and 1730 UK time. The first two hours of each session are obligatory, the last half hour is devoted to optional discussion. Follow this link to find the time of day this is offered in your time zone.
The number of participants is limited to 15 to facilitate time for questions and individual assistance with the exercises. When one of the workshops fills registration will close.
Please note, previous offerings of this introductory workshop filled rapidly (within a couple of weeks). We encourage registering at your earliest opportunity.
Format and Delivery method
The training workshop will be delivered via the internet using Zoom software that enables participants to use their web camera to interact with the instructor during lectures and exercises.
The workshop will be delivered in 10 two-hour sessions. Each session will consist of an interactive lecture, a computing exercise analysing distance sampling data sets and a concluding question and answer session discussing principles and technical details of the session. Sessions will take place weekdays over a two week period.
When participants have registered, further details will be provided regarding:
- scheduling a test Zoom session with the instructor to ensure the internet connection can support video conferencing
- access to the RStudio cloud site for the training workshop
- location of the online lecture materials
In the first instance, the workshop will be based upon analyses using the Distance package in R. All participants will make use of the cloud version of R-Studio. Participants will not need to install R software onto their computers. Instead R, the R-Studio programming environment, necessary packages and data sets will all be available when you access the RStudio Cloud site created for the workshop.
Distance sampling concepts to be discussed include:
- line transects
- point transects
- survey design
- detection function models
- estimation of uncertainty and its sources
- geographic stratification for variance reduction
- indirect (dung or nest) surveys
- assessing effect of habitat factors on transect-level animal density (new for 2021)
You should have some familiarity, not necessarily proficiency, with the R programming language; however code will be provided for running the 9 exercises in the workshop.
Registration and Payment
The registration fee is 215 GBP
The registration deadline is 23 March 2021.
Payment should be made using the online store at the University of St Andrews. Please follow this link to make payment for the workshop to be held from 12-23 April 2021
“I really like your teaching style. The pace is steady enough for ample note taking, but quick enough to keep my attention span. The humour gets me chuckling alone at my desk. The concepts are so easy to understand and relate to. Some of these concepts I’ve been aware of for a long time in a kind of ‘working knowledge’ way, but hearing you describe the theory behind them is giving me a lot of ‘oh yeah!’ moments. It is a real pleasure and is giving me a lot to think about for my own teaching.” — Dr Sarah Marley, University of Portsmouth
“I would like to say I really liked RStudio Cloud and it is working just fine and I am really enjoying using it as a student. I’m looking forward to using it as an instructor too. I didn’t get the chance to give you a feedback about the first half of the course, so I will do it now. I really liked the first half of the course. I love distance sampling and I am enjoying every second of the course! The only thing I can say about this particular workshop is it deserves more time.” — Kaan Özgencil, PhD student, Department of Biological Sciences, Middle East Technical University, Ankara
“I’m really enjoying the course! It has really helped with my understanding of some of the basic concepts. My R education has been very sporadic and with very little guidance, so this has been really good for me. So glad it was offered!” — Rebecca, United States
For information about workshops please contact Eric Rexstad, email: firstname.lastname@example.org