Experimental Design for Biologists

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CSHL Press, 2007 - Science - 206 pages
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The effective design of scientific experiments is critical to success, yet graduate students receive very little formal training in how to do it. Based on a well-received course taught by the author, Experimental Design for Biologistsfills this gap. Experimental Design for Biologistsexplains how to establish the framework for an experimental project, how to set up a system, design experiments within that system, and how to determine and use the correct set of controls. Separate chapters are devoted to negative controls, positive controls, and other categories of controls that are perhaps less recognized, such as ‚€œassumption controls‚€ and ‚€œexperimentalist controls‚€ . Furthermore, there are sections on establishing the experimental system, which include performing critical ‚€œsystem controls‚€ . Should all experimental plans be hypothesis-driven? Is a question/answer approach more appropriate? What was the hypothesis behind the Human Genome Project? What color is the sky? How does one get to Carnegie Hall? The answers to these kinds of questions can be found in Experimental Design for Biologists. Written in an engaging manner, the book provides compelling lessons in framing an experimental question, establishing a validated system to answer the question, and deriving verifiable models from experimental data. Experimental Design for Biologistsis an essential source of theory and practical guidance in designing a research plan.
 

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Contents

Ch 1 Defining the Experimental Program
1
Ch 2 The Hypopthesis as a Framework for Scientific Projects
7
Ch 3 Scientific Settings in Which a Hypothesis Is Not Practical
17
Ch 4 The ProblemQuestion as a Framework for Scientific Projects
21
Ch 5 What Constitutes an Acceptable Answer to an Experimental Question?
33
Ch 6 How Experimental Conclusions Are Used to Represent Reality
35
Ch 7 Establishing a System for Experimentation
51
Ch 8 Designing the Experiment
57
Ch 12 The Requirement for the Negative Control
117
Ch 13 The Requirement for the Positive Control
133
Ch 15 Subject Controls
157
Ch 16 Assumption Controls
171
Ch 17 Experimentalist Controls
183
Ch 18 A Description of Biological Empiricism
191
Ch 19 A Short Synopsis
199
Index
203

Ch 9 Validating a Model
67
Ch 10 Designing the Experimental Project
75
Ch 11 Experimental Repetition
103

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