If you’ve ever taken the time to explore the content on MicrobiologyBytes, you’ll know that in addition to all the microbiology, there a fair amount of maths and statistics. Today I am happy to announce the launch of StatsBytes – a free, online self-directed introduction to the statistics package R. The documents as published today are essentially a first draft and I hope everyone who read this will help by scanning them carefully for mistakes, which I am sure are lurking there. Teaching materials of this sort need to be embedded in academic disciplines for acceptance. StatsBytes is published under a CC-BY-SA licence, so I want people to take it and repurpose it by rewriting the examples.
Originally, I planned to produce this resource as a microchunked uncourse on statsbytes.wordpress.com. In practice, I found that this approach didn’t help me with authoring in this instance (unlike MicrobiologyBytes, which has been my day to day notebook over the last few years and has contributed enormously to the production of the new edition of my textbook, Principles of Molecular Virology), so StatsBytes is now an old-fashioned static website. The one concession to modernity is a trial of a Facebook page as a support site for the course. I’m not yet sure if Facebook is a good choice for this or not, or whether better alternatives are available – I’d welcome your comments on this. And indeed on anything else you spot and want to comment on.