Statistics, Methodology and SPSS

General Information  
To be able to appraise scientific papers critically and to be able to conduct research, competencies with regard to statistics and research methodology is necessary. The focus in this module is on statistics; methodological issues are limited to reliability of measurement methods. It starts at the basics of statistics (measurement level, frequency distributions) and continues from that to statistical null hypothesis testing, correlation and regression to t-tests, ANOVA’s and concepts such as power. Participants practice with SPSS assignments in which they apply what they just learned. Homework assignments are given to practice as well. At the end of the module the participants take a test, based on one or two scientific papers. The course ends with a feedback on the test session. Examples and assignments are as much as possible about dentistry-related subjects.

Teaching methode

Before the first lecture a homework assignment needs to be done to give the teacher a basic idea of the level of the participants. The first lecture will be adjusted to that entrance level. Interactive lectures are combined with some assignments to be completed during the lessons and homework assignments following each course day. Participants will practice with SPSS to conduct some basic statistical analyses. For the last session before the exam two research papers have to be prepared and these will be discussed with regard to statistics and methodology in the session. The answers of the exam will be discussed in a feedback session.

Learning assessment

The final grade is the grade of a written exam, partly based on one or two research papers, composed of closed and open end answers. The grade of the closed end questions forms 50% of the final grade, so does the grade of the open end questions. More weight is given to the questions about statistics, compared to the questions pertaining to methodological issues.  The exam is rated using an answer scheme by one or both teachers. In case of doubt the teachers discuss the result. Grading from 1 to 10. Pass above 5,5. The final grade of this course will be 'pass' or 'fail'.


The course will be held once a year for five days(one day per week) and two mornings in January and February. On the last morning the exam will be evaluated.

Language of Instruction

The course will be held in English, however, if there are enough participants who prefer the course to be held in Dutch, a separate Dutch speaking group can be formed.


The course is compulsory for all PhD students in ACTA. Exemption can only be granted to students after they have contacted the research coordinator, Martijn van Steenbergen.

Credits:3 ECTS
Contact hours per week: Self-study per week:4*8 hours + 1*4 hours + 1*2,5 hours exam + 2 hours feedback 2.5
CoordinatorDr. I.H.A. Aartman
Teacher(s)Dr. I.H.A. Aartman, Dr. A.J. van Wijk

Download the schedule

Admission prerequisites

No special requirements

Application deadline and subscription
To be announced


  • Field, A. Discovering statistics using SPSS for windows. 2nd ed. +cd. Uitgever Sage Publications Ltd. Aantal pagina’s: 779 Incl. software: € 47.80 ISBN 97 80 761 944 522
  • Petrie, A., Sabin, C. (2009). Medical Statistics at a Glance. 3nd edition. Blackwell Publishers. [ISBN: 9781405127806]