• Advanced Courses in Life Sciences

    Header of Ecology at Transmitting Science

Course – 2nd Edition

Introduction to Ecological Data Analysis

October 3rd-7th, 2016, Valencia (Spain)




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Course Introduction to Ecological Data AnalysisCourse overview

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.


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





January 14th-18th, 2019




36 hours on-site.

This course is equivalent to 4 ECTS (European Credit Transfer System) at the Life Science Zurich Graduate School.

The recognition of ECTS by other institutions depends on each university or school.


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

Participants who have completed the course will receive a certificate at the end of it.

Oyvind Hammer instructor for Transmitting Science

Dr. Øyvind Hammer
University of Oslo

Ana Rosa Gomez-Cano coordinator at Transmitting Science

Dr. Ana Rosa Gómez-Cano
Transmitting Science

Soledad De Esteban-Trivigno Transmitting Science coordinator

Dr. Soledad De Esteban-Trivigno
Transmitting Science


Monday, October 3rd, 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, October 4th, 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, October 5th, 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, October 6th, 2016.

  • Testing community data: ANOSIM, PerMANOVA, Mantel test.
    • Practice with software.
  • Diversity measures and testing, rarefaction.
    • Practice with software.

Friday, October 7th, 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 Fee
  • Early bird (until January 31st, 2020):
  • 545 € *
    (436 € for Ambassador Institutions)
  • Regular (after January 31st, 2020):
  • 634 € *
    (507.20 € for Ambassador Institutions)
  • This includes course material, coffee breaks and lunches (VAT included).
    * Participants from companies/industry will have an extra charge of 100 €.
  • Course Fee + Accommodation Package
  • Early bird (until January 31st, 2020):
  • 895 €*

    (786 € for Ambassador Institutions)

  • Regular (after January 31st, 2020):
  • 984 €*
    (857.20 € for Ambassador Institutions)
  • This includes course material, coffee breaks, transportation between the Venue and Heraklion, accommodation from Sunday to Friday, breakfasts, lunches and dinners (VAT included).
    * Participants from companies/industry will have an extra charge of 100 €.

You can check the list of Ambassador Institutions. If you want your institution to become a Transmitting Science Ambassador please contact us at communication@transmittingscience.com


Course Schedule

Participants will make their own way

  • Wednesday to Sunday:
    • 9:30 to 13:30 Lessons.
    • 13:30 to 15:00 Lunch (included).
    • 15:00 to 18:00 Lessons.

The class 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.

Course + Accommodation Package Schedule
  • Tuesday:
    • 19:00 Meeting point in Estación del Norte (Valencia train station) to take the bus to Grao de Gandía.
    • 20:00 Registration at the Hotel.
    • 20:30 Dinner.
  • Wednesday to Saturday:
    • 08:00 to 09:00 Breakfast
    • 9:30 to 13:30 Lessons
    • 13:30 to 15:00 Lunch (included)
    • 15:00 to 18:00 Lessons
    • 20:30 Dinner
  • Sunday:
    • 8:00 to 9:00 Breakfast.
    • 9:30 to 13:30 Lessons
    • 13:30 to 15:00 Lunch (included)
    • 15:00 to 18:00 Lessons
    • 18:00 Meeting point in the Venue to take the bus to Valencia city.
    • 19:00 Arrival at Estación del Norte (Valencia train station).

Valencia train station is connected with Valencia Airport by subway. There will be more information about how to get there soon.

The class 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.


If you take the Accommodation Package you will be hosted in the Cibeles Hotel, in single-sex shared dormitories (2 – 3 people) with bathroom en-suite.

A supplemental charge will be added if you prefer to stay in a single room.

Accommodation is included from Sunday (check-in) to Friday (check-out). Breakfast, lunch and dinner are also provided during the week, starting from the dinner of Sunday to lunch of Friday (included).

Hotel Cibeles is located at 3 blocks from the Venue and 3 blocks from the beach.

The Accommodation Package includes transportation from the centre of Heraklion to the venue and back, at the start and end of the course, respectively. The trip takes around 1 hour 50 minutes each way. If you require transportation from or to Chania (the other city of Crete with an airport), please contact the course coordinator who can arrange it at an additional cost.

If you do not wish to take the Accommodation Package, you can find a few other options in the surrounding area. However, please be aware that access to and travelling around the area requires a private vehicle as public transport is scarce. Therefore, course participants will find choosing the Accommodation Package more convenient.

  • Hotel-Cibeles


Discounts are not cumulative and apply only on the Course Fee. We offer the possibility of paying in two instalments (contact courses@transmittingscience.com).

Former participants will have a 5 % discount on the Course Fee.

20 % discount on the Course Fee is offered for members of some organizations (Ambassador Institutions). If you want to apply to this discount please indicate it in the Registration form (proof will be asked later).

Unemployed scientists living in the country were the course will be held, as well as PhD students based in that country without any grant or scholarship to develop their PhD, could benefit from a 40 % discount on the Course Fee. If you want to ask for this discount, please contact the course coordinator. That would apply for a maximum of 2 places and they will be covered by strict inscription order.