PHY-30027 - Data Analysis and Model Testing
Coordinator: Barry Smalley Room: LJ2.05 Tel: +44 1782 7 34229
Lecture Time: See Timetable...
Level: Level 6
Credits: 15
Study Hours: 150
School Office: 01782 734921

Programme/Approved Electives for 2024/25


Available as a Free Standing Elective





Successful study at level 4 and level 5 of either Physics (Combined Honours), Astrophysics (Combined Honours), Physics (Single Honours) or Physics with Astrophysics (Single Honours)

Barred Combinations


Description for 2024/25

This module aims to provide hands-on experience of using some commonly used statistical techniques for analysing scientific data. As well as presenting the theory behind the techniques, the module will develop the skills required to apply these statistical techniques to real physics or astrophysics data sets. Some expertise will be gained in order to judge which technique is applicable in a given situation and whether the results are meaningful.

To acquire a systematic understanding of statistical analysis methods and apply these techniques to critically evaluate
physical/astrophysical data sets from primary sources.

Talis Aspire Reading List
Any reading lists will be provided by the start of the course.

Intended Learning Outcomes

The student will have systematic understanding of statistical techniques used to analyze and interpret
physical/astrophysical data: 1
The student will have conceptual understanding that enables the student to solve data analysis problems and to interpret scientific data, using statistical ideas and modern analysis techniques: 1,2
The student will be able to critically evaluate data from primary sources to make and communicate judgements by
applying established numerical analysis techniques to physical/astrophysical data: 2

Study hours

9 hours lectures (scheduled)
18 hours practical classes (scheduled)
6 hours project work (scheduled)
8 hours problem sheets
20 hours project report writing
87 hours private study and preparation for examination
2 class test

School Rules


Description of Module Assessment

1: Problem Sheets weighted 20%
2 problem sheets
Questions on systematic understanding of statistical and data analysis methods and their application to physical/astrophysical problems (2 problem sheets)

2: Project weighted 40%
2000 word project report
Application of statistical and numerical methods to a data analysis or interpretation problem informed by developments at the forefront of physics/astrophysics. The methods used and an interpretation of the results to be submitted as a written report (2000 words).

3: Class Test weighted 40%
2 hour unseen open book practical test
Two hour unseen "open book" practical computer-based test. The test will comprise between 3 and 5 compulsory short questions. The questions will test whether students can correctly identify and apply correct statistical techniques to analyze and critically evaluate the significance of results from experimental data.