Episode 4: Epidemiology/Statistics

Gavin van der Nest
Gavin van der Nest

I am Gavin van der Nest, a final year PhD candidate at the Department of Methodology & Statistics  (M&S). My research focuses on using finite mixture models to identify latent classes of subjects following distinct development trajectories over time. The M&S department comprises a collaboration between the Department of Methodology and Statistics of the Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience (FPM) and the Department of Methodology and Statistics of the Faculty of Health Medicine and Life Sciences (FHML) under common leadership.

The people

We are a relatively small department of roughly 14 staff members including 2 internal PhD students. Our department is headed by the engaging and affable Prof. Dr. Gerard van Breukelen, whilst our secretary, Edith van Eijsden, ensures the smooth running of the department.

The research

We have broad expertise in statistical methodology and research. Our current focus areas include: 1.) Study design and methods of analysis for nested and longitudinal data, 2.) Sample size calculations and mixed (multilevel) regression analysis, 3.) Methods for multilevel interrater agreement and reliability, 4.) Multiple imputation methods for missing data, 5.) Bayesian statistics for high-dimensional data, 6.) Growth curve analysis including longitudinal finite mixture modeling, 6.) Detection of person-situation interactions.

The meetings

The department hosts a monthly colloquium offering researchers and interested parties the opportunity to share statistical-related research and novel applications. You may contact our secretary to be added to the mailing list. The department also offers statistics courses over the full spectrum from Bachelor’s to PhD.

The interesting stuff

Our department is relatively quiet – statistics is serious stuff after all (smile)! We are known for making silly statistics jokes that only we find funny. However, we are also known to enjoy a nice round of tenpin bowling and archery. Perhaps another department will be brave enough to offer a challenge ;-)?

Further queries can be directed to either Gavin (g.vandernest@maastrichtuniversity.nl) or Edith van Eijsden (e.vaneijsden@maastrichtuniversity.nl