Statististics and Simulation

(Sist oppdatert: $Date$)


General arrangements and requirements

The module will be based around the following learning activities:

Videos (lectures) for home study
typically 90-105 minutes per week in 5-10 minute chunks (or so). In some cases, the slides may be available additionally as PDF. (more info)
Class room sessions, 2h each, three times a week
The main activity will be supervised exercises and individual help. Questions of general interest will be answered with ad hoc plenary talks, as required.
Exercise sheets for individual work.
It is expected that you work with these during the classroom sessions.
Mandatory coursework
Some of the coursework will be mandatory. To be specified.
See the reading list.

The module is worth 10 ECTS credits. By official standards, that corresponds to a workload of 250-300 hours. The weekly load may depend a little bit on the exam date, but 16-20 hours per week is a fair assumption. You can just as well schedule that much in your timetable, or expect to fail.

In particular, it is important to watch the video lectures ahead of each session, to be prepared for discussion and problem solving. Yet, it is a good idea to bring head phones in case you want to rewatch.

All the teaching material is covered by copyright and related legislation. Redistribution in any form or forum is prohibited. You may use it as you like for personal purposes only.

Read the detailled requirements carefully.



Foundations (Part 1)
Week 2-3 (ending Friday 16 January)
Error-Control Coding (Part 2)
Week 4-5 (ending with mandatory submission Monday 2 February)
Predator-Prey Modelling (Part 3)
Week 6-8
Diffusion Models (Part 4)
Week 9-11
Traffic Simulations (Part 5)
Week 12-15
Exam Revision

Sample exam papers will be made available immediately following the last project. We will have four supervised class sessions during the revision period.

  1. Wednesday 9 April and Thursday 10 April
  2. Wednesday 23 April (just after Easter)
  3. Wednesday 30 April

The room is booked for the class also on the Tuesdays and Thursdays during the last two weeks of April, if you need it for unsupervised exam revision.

Technical issues

The teaching method and format in this module is a pilot. Many of the tools and file formats have not been used in previous modules. Therefore, incompatibility or other issues may arise. Please, report any problems ASAP. Actually, please report success stories too :-)

The following file formats are used. If you have problems, please use tools that are known to work, if at all possible.

File type Experience on Ubuntu 13.04 Experience on Mac OS X Lion
MPEG4 (video) Plays in mplayer and vlc. Does not open with the default plugin in Firefox. The encoding should be H264 and AAC, being compliant with the reference manual for IT services in government organisation. Plays well in QuickTime. Does not play directly from Safari.
OGG/Theora/Vorbis Plays in vlc. This file format is an open standard, which is accredited by the reference manual for IT services in government organisation. None yet.
PDF without annotations Works in evince, okular, Firefox. Works in Safari, Preview, Skim.
PDF with annotations Works in evince and okular. Does not display annotations in Firefox' default. Works in Safari, Preview, Skim. Created using Skim.

The first version of the video files are quite large, and this may be the cause of failure in the web browsers. I am considering increased compression and possible reduced resolution. Any input on desired/useful qualities are welcome.

Colour coding

Videos are colour coded as a guideline. Some videos will mix different kinds of material, so the colour coding cannot be complete or absolutely exact.

Light green background Foundations of statistics. These are primary videos, explaining new key concepts from statistics.
Dark green background Foundations and theory of simulation. These are primary videos, explaining new key concepts of computer simulation.
White background Unclassified. These videos typically elaborate on the core material of primary videos. Usually, the primary (green) videos suffice to solve the exercise, but the white ones may provide extra help and insight.
Light blue background Application domain These videos discuss domain-specific theory. You will need to study them to understand the processes to be modelled and simulated in the projects and exercises.
Pink background Software tool demos (e.g. matlab) These videos focus the practical matters of how to use software tools such as matlab to solve problems in the course. Occassionally, they will also introduce a new theoretical idea or two, from a practical and concrete angle.
Yellow background Anecdotal material These videos are intended to give additional insight without expecting you to learn the details. If you run out of time, you may skip the anecdotal material.
Purple background Model solutions The video explains how to solve sample problems with a standard suitable for exams. There will normally also be a typed solution alongside video and slides.
Red on black Deprecated material Videos in red on black background have been superseded by other videos; typically because we were dissatisfied with the contents or the quality. They are retained for completeness, but you should skip them unless you have a particular interest.

Hans Georg Schaathun / Siebe van Albada