Monday, August 19, 2013

Katlyn - Week 7 and 8 wrap up

A screen print of my R work
These last two weeks Ella and I have been able to do some statistical data analysis using the programming language R. This was intimidating at first because I have not had any other programming experience. However, after a few hours of explanation from Matt, we were able to get the basic idea.

After we started understanding the basics of R, we were able to export the data from the online data base into R. This allowed us to do some analysis on it. Since there was such a large amount of data (23,101 fish from 1977 and 1978 alone), we had to decide what main ideas we wanted to answer. We decided on examining the differences in fish communities based on differences in latitude and depth. Since not all stations had both GPS coordinates and depth, we separated the data into two groups, also called data frames, one containing stations with a GPS location and the other containing stations with recorded depths.

To examine the differences we did a Multi Response Permutations Procedure (MRPP), which basically tells you if there are any statistically significant differences between and within groups. After running this test we found that there were small differences between the depth groups that were statistically significant because there p-value was much less than 0.001. We also found that any differences between the latitude groupings we had were not significant because the p-value was too high.

After we analyzed the data we made a PowerPoint presentation and prepared a speech. At the end of the internship we gave this speech to a large group of researchers, staff, and other interns at Hatfield. I feel like this was a great experience because we got to see what it is like to present scientific findings to others in the science field.

During the last week I took a break from preparing our speech to go on a walk to the beautiful South Beach. I thoroughly enjoyed the gorgeous scenic surrounds. Being around nature and admiring a beautiful sunset allowed me to appreciate my last week at Hatfield Marine Science Center.

No comments:

Post a Comment