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Structural Equation Modelling for Ecologists and Evolutionary Biologists (SEMR01)

Oliver Hooker, May 31, 2017
 

Structural Equation Modelling for Ecologists and Evolutionary Biologists (SEMR01)

https://www.prstatistics.com/course/structural-equation-modelling-for-ecologists-and-evolutionary-biologists-semr01/

This course will be delivered by Dr. Jarrett Byrnes and Dr. Jon Lefcheck (piecewise cran package)

23 October 2017 - 27 October 2017

Course Overview: The course is a primer on structural equation modelling (SEM) and confirmatory path analysis, with an emphasis on practical skills and applications to real-world data.

Structural equation modelling is a rapidly growing technique in ecology and evolution that unites multiple hypotheses in a single causal network. It provides an intuitive graphical representation of relationships among variables, underpinned by well-described mathematical estimation procedures. Several advances in SEM over the past few years have expanded its utility for typical ecological datasets, which include count data, missing observations, and nested or hierarchical designs.

We will cover the basic philosophy behind SEM, provide approachable mathematical explanations of the techniques, and cover recent extensions to mixed effects models and non-normal distributions. Along the way, we will work through many examples from the primary literature using the open-source statistical software R (www.r-project.org). We will draw on two popular R packages for conducting SEM, including lavaan and piecewiseSEM.

Participants are encouraged to bring their own data, as there will be opportunities throughout the course to plan, analyze, and receive feedback on structural equation models.

Monday 23rd Introduction to SEM Module 1: What is Structural Equation Modeling? Why would I use it? Module 2: Creating multivariate causal models Module 3: Fitting piecewise models Readings: Grace 2010 (overview), Whalen et al. 2013 (example)

Tuesday 24th SEM Using Likelihood Module 4: Fitting Observed Variable models with covariance structures Module 5: What does it mean to evaluate a multivariate hypothesis? Module 6: Latent Variable models Module 7: ANCOVA revisited & Nonlinearities Readings: Grace & Bollen 2005, Shipley 2004 Optional Reading: Pearl 2012, Pearl 2009 (causality)

Wednesday 25th Piecewise SEM Module 8: Introduction to piecewise approach Module 9: Incorporation of random effects models Model 10: Autocorrelation Reading: Shipley 2009; Lefcheck 2016

Thursday 26th Advanced Topics with Likelihood and Piecewise SEM Module 11: Multigroup models and non-linearities Module 12: Composite Variables Module 13: Phylogenetically-correlated data Module 14: Prediction using SEM Module 15: How To Reject A Paper That Uses SEM Readings: Grace & Julia 1999, von Hardenberg & Gonzalez‐Voyer 2013

Friday 27th – Classes from 09:00 to 16:00 Open Lab and Final Presentations

Please email any inquiries to oliverhooker@prstatistics.com or visit our website www.prstatistics.com

Please feel free to distribute this material anywhere you feel is suitable


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Oliver Hooker PhD. PR statistics

2017 publications -

Ecosystem size predicts eco-morphological variability in post-glacial diversification. Ecology and Evolution. In press.

The physiological costs of prey switching reinforce foraging specialization. Journal of animal ecology.

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