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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Statistical Inference by Johns Hopkins University

4,426 ratings

About the Course

Statistical inference is the process of drawing conclusions about populations or scientific truths from data. There are many modes of performing inference including statistical modeling, data oriented strategies and explicit use of designs and randomization in analyses. Furthermore, there are broad theories (frequentists, Bayesian, likelihood, design based, …) and numerous complexities (missing data, observed and unobserved confounding, biases) for performing inference. A practitioner can often be left in a debilitating maze of techniques, philosophies and nuance. This course presents the fundamentals of inference in a practical approach for getting things done. After taking this course, students will understand the broad directions of statistical inference and use this information for making informed choices in analyzing data....

Top reviews


Oct 25, 2018

Course is compressed with lots of statistical concepts. Which is very good as most must know concepts are imparted. Lots of extra reading is required to gain all insights. Very good motivating start .


Sep 24, 2020

the teachers were awesome in this course. I liked this course a lot.Understood it properly.Thanks to all the beloved teachers and mentors who toiled hard to make these course easy to handle.Gracious!

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801 - 825 of 869 Reviews for Statistical Inference

By Chris M

Apr 17, 2016

Content covered in this course was hard to learn, both because it was pitched at a level that realistically was more akin to a wrap up of content already covered (when in fact it was all new content) and because the instructor, Brian Caffo, has not a style that was conducive to teaching.

The instructor often would launch into a topic, and then speed through a calculation with basically no explanation.

In terms of time, this was one of the most intensive courses in the specialisation, and I'd recommend taking this course alone (not concurrently with other courses) for that very reason.

By Habib T

Mar 12, 2016

This is 3rd time I a trying this course. Labeling someone just reading the slides out loud as a course is ridiculous. I have to express that this is horrible, Please don't callout a course. Call it Audio Slides.

I have a Master's degree in engineering and have won scholarship all my life. This is the first time I am trying out on-line course. The courses were okay till I came to this sections mostly done by Brian Jaffe. Knowing and teaching is two different things, Brian! I will continue, with help from other materials outside the course. But I have ti rate this as 1 star.

By Cristiano S d A

Mar 20, 2016

The worst professor in this specialization. The subject really interesting, and I have been studying for a while in my Master's and PhD in engineering, so I could understand the bulk of the course. This is a very important subject in data analysis and these poor explained classes could make lot of people give up the specialization. Statistics involves much of mathematics and calculus which make it a natural challenge for most of the people. Please, improve these classes in order not to disappoint the student who want to become data scientists.

By George C

Mar 18, 2018

I found the lectures to be very lacking. The lecturer seems to make too many assumptions on what the student knows. The pacing is off on what is important to know, and what isn't. There should be more examples on how the information can be utilized in R. The quizzes should be restructured to require writing some form of R script to solve the problem. The swirl exercises don't help either. Furthermore, I was hoping that there would be more depth on how this may be utilized in a real world setting.

By Ben K

Jun 27, 2016

The lectures for this class are incredibly weak. Later lectures by the same professor are reasonable and decently structured. These lectures need to be redone. The quizzes are either out-of-order or expect you to do a lot of research on your own beyond the class notes and topics. The class project is unbelievably simple, and the final metric for the class project includes duplication and one portion of the grade assigned simply if you feel the person you're grading "tried".

By Nitin K

Nov 21, 2017

I am finding this course to have a flavor where the material written on the slides are just read out loud. The content doesn't seem interesting. I was determined to complete the Specialization but I am leaving it as, unfortunately, I am feeling sleepy just by listening to the course material. This was not the case at all before taking this course. I hope the teaching methodology can be enhanced to make it more engaging. Thanks.

By Muhammad M

Sep 14, 2022

Instructors do not check the project submission. They gave it to other students to check. I don't think it is a good way. The instructor should tell his reviews and check first and immediately grade the project. The review ONLY depends on other students. So, just wait for other students and reply in the thread "please review my work." and wait for the whole year and not confirm if they give an honest review or not.

By Karin K

Dec 7, 2020

The lectures were largely incomprehensible, even though I have a maths background, albeit some years ago. I used the textbook (on Leanpub) as the Syllabus and sought other books/websites, in particular OpenStats. The assignment was challenging initially, but once I'd done it (and got full marks!) I really had learned something. Easily the most frustrating and hardest course of the Data Specialisation so far.

By Rich

Apr 4, 2016

Many videos lacked associated pdf slides so confusing to watch. Some topics on slides were not covered in videos. A supplemental video for those would be great even of optional.

Brian Cato is a good presenter, however, more examples needed to be done showing how to work out various statistical problems both by traditional method and using R.

By kp

Jan 17, 2016

Explanations not clear and feels like he's reading rather than explaining things.

Consecutive videos feel like they are disconnected. Videos stop in the middle of him talking something. Thank god for the swirl assignments which make things much clearer!

Also the course proceed very fast not giving enough time to the concepts.

By Miguel A

Feb 6, 2021

Si estás haciendo las especialización de Data Science, te enfrentas a un módulo "duro". La filosofía de enseñanza del Prof Caffo dista mucho de la del Prof Peng (curso más amenos). Hay mucho que mejorar en el materíal del curso, a veces resulta dificil de comprender el objetivo de las explicaciones del profesor.

By Yifeng W

Mar 31, 2022

This course is a typical example of what a bad instructor can present. Brian Caffo did a wonderful job at explaining things in a unclear, distractive, and unorganized way. You gotta skip all the videos and jump to the R lessons directly so as to not let this bad instructor to disturb your mind of learning.

By Nick H

Sep 18, 2017

Very hard to follow, many of the maths symbols are not well explained. To little time spent on each concept and many concepts don't get a proper explanation. I had to re-learn almost every concept externally as I learnt little from the videos. Some of the lessons on khan academy are much easier to follow.

By Beverly A

Dec 4, 2016

I've not found this course organized pedagogically speaking. The organization, insofar as "here is a list of stuff I'll be teaching" makes sense. But a lot of the "teaching" is ill suited for someone looking to learn with a minimal statistical background. It's incredibly frustrating and disheartening.

By James T

Jul 26, 2016

Terrible instruction in the videos and unclear directions. I'd avoid this course if possible, but it's required for the specialization. New videos should be shot and inspiration taken from more instructive and interesting guides, like The Cartoon Guide to Statistics by Gonick & Smith.

By Cássio M B V

Jul 14, 2022

I do not recommend. The lectures are just a teacher reading slides... no really meaningful insights about what's being taught... If you already have experience on the subject, then you can follow it easily. But, why would you take the course if that's the case? I am giving up.

By Robert O

Mar 6, 2016

I really wanted to learn this stuff. I have almost no background in statistics. But the lectures didn't cover stuff with enough rigor and repetition for me to pick up much.

So I pretty much gamed the quizzes and project enough to get through the class. Rather disappointing.

By Donald R

Dec 17, 2016

Covers basic statistics (Mean, Variance, Simple Z and T tests). Not what I was expecting as Inference. Multiple testing of data is a sign of poor experimental design and should be avoided, not adjusted for. Bootstrapping is not a new idea and has been used in other fields.

By Nikolai A

Nov 21, 2017

Focused little on the programming side of probability, and the explanations of the material were so vague and assumed you knew so much about probability already, that I ended up using my college notes for the quizzes and projects more than the actual lecture video notes.

By Peihuan M

Jul 27, 2020

It is very hard for people with no previous statistics background to follow. Some key concepts are just one sentence mentioned in passing. I have to go on YouTube to learn first and come back. Then I will understand some of the things the instructors were talking about.

By Gennadiy R

Apr 18, 2016

Do NOT recommend. Very poorly explained. Refers to some concepts without introducing, introduces others without explaining. Spends most of the time looking to the computer screen instead of toward you and reading the text instead of explaining in understandable manner.

By liew w p

Aug 23, 2016

Personally, I feel that the way of sharing and teaching was assuming everyone is an expert in this subject. This course need to be reviewed to make it more suitable to various groups of profession as not everyone has the same level of mathematics background.

By Jeffrey G

Aug 16, 2017

In general, I'm really excited about statistics, there are so many interesting and cool problems to work on, and yet, here I am, forced to do an analysis of, "The Effect of Vitamin C on Tooth Growth in Guinea Pigs."I can't make this shit up...

By Deas R

Feb 15, 2016

Seeking out supplemental material is not only helpful, but necessary. This course does not provide a foundation of knowledge for inferential statistics so much as present several equations and functions and describe how one might use them.

By Sharon E

Jul 21, 2020

This course starts with the assumption that you understand all of the terminology covered and that you already have a thorough understanding of statistics and inferences. I'm sorry - if I knew all that I wouldn't be taking this module.