Integrative Statistics

Roland B. Stark, M.Ed.
Statistician and Research Consultant

[Roland's Photo]

Services | Past Projects | Qualifications | Contact |

Services

Since 2001 I have assisted businesses, nonprofit organizations, attorneys, Ph.D. students, and university faculty with quantitative research, program evaluations, and other statistical work. In Boston and eastern Massachusetts I meet with clients face-to-face, and I also provide services at a distance. One of my specialties is survey research -- creatively and resourcefully finding ways to minimize bias, enhance validity, and shed light on attitudes and opinions.

By working closely with clients, listening carefully for their needs, I help them refine their research so as to best accomplish their goals. In addition to receiving expert technical advice and services, my clients come away with a deeper understanding of research methods to inform their future work.

For those with an already well-defined research plan, I provide technical assistance; for those still shaping their research design, I can guide them through the process. This might involve weighing factors such as

  • cost vs. comprehensiveness
  • long-term vs. short-term priorities
  • keeping things simple vs. staying accountable to complexity.
I also help clients navigate and integrate different aspects of their research and reporting. This means help in the areas of

  • design of experiments, surveys, and other studies
    • development of valid and reliable measures
    • power analysis (planning for the right sample size and desired precision)
    • innovative sampling and weighting methods
  • selection and most efficient use of software
  • data analysis
  • interpretation of findings
  • presentation through clear, informative text and data graphics.

In data analysis, I have no "standard" set of techniques; I draw from a wide variety of methods in order to build insight into a topic. Many past projects have been served by developing statistical models to explain or predict key outcomes or to narrow down the likely range of results (see Project Details). For these I have often used multiple linear regression, factor or cluster analysis, or binary or multinomial logistic regression. For some studies I have created Monte Carlo simulations, combining known information with guessed-at parameters in order to produce the best estimates of a critical outcome.


Past Projects

As an independent consultant I have contributed to the following large-scale projects:
  • Health care –
    • explaining the incidence of surgical errors in different types of hospitals
    • understanding bullying among nurses and its implications for staff turnover
  • Education –
    • investigating the qualifications of special education personnel
    • assessing the links between staff retention and salaries
    • tracking and analyzing student outcomes in private special education programs statewide
    • comparing student achievement in charter schools and conventional public schools
  • Business –
    • conducting a national survey to demarcate the US market for staff development trainings
    • devising a sampling plan to reduce corporate auditing expenses
  • Law –
    • researching gender equity in the professional status of 44,000 Massachusetts attorneys
On a smaller scale, I have helped attorneys prepare rebuttal of expert testimony; conducted analysis for a book on developmental psychology; evaluated trainings in information technology for social workers; and contributed to work in linguistics and archaeology.

Project Details provides in-depth descriptions of some past projects.


Qualifications

I have a B.A. from Harvard University and an M.Ed. from Boston College in Educational Research, Measurement, and Evaluation. I have published about 20 papers on research methods, special education, social work education, and other topics. I am a past member of the American Statistical Association and the American Educational Research Association, for which I have reviewed research proposals. I also peer-review manuscripts for the Journal of College Student Retention.

In addition to freelance consulting, I spent four years as a Statistician/Researcher at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and I worked for five years as a Senior Research Associate at Maguire Associates, Inc., supporting universities' enrollment and outreach efforts. Currently I serve as Senior Research Analyst at ReInforced Care, Inc., helping hospitals to understand patients' experiences post-discharge and to achieve better health outcomes. My résumé is available in .pdf.


Contact

You can contact me at Roland@IntegrativeStatistics.com.
I reply to most inquiries within 24 hours. My rates are competitive and negotiable.


~ Copyright 2007-2014 by Roland B. Stark. ~


"Your advice and expertise have been very valuable to us... The data that you have compiled, analyzed and explained in the reports has made a huge difference in our efforts to make the state regulators responsive to the staffing problems in our schools....You did an outstanding job on the survey report. Your expertise has really raised the survey findings to a much higher level of sophistication. I really appreciate your work!"

James V. Major
Executive Director, Massachusetts Association of 766 Approved Private Schools



"Thanks for these analyses. I'm looking through them and learning a great deal. I think you could have some very meaningful and important results here. There were some real surprises."

Nathan Arrington, Ph.D.
Professor of Archaeology
Princeton University



"He has proven to be quite competent, smart, and professional, and his work has been terrific. So thank you for your kind assistance in helping me find Roland. I am extremely grateful."

Karen Rosen, Ph.D.
Professor of Psychology
Boston College



"Roland was able to really listen to what we wanted and worked with us to achieve that goal -- often within unrealistic time frames. He had a wonderful ability to explain the numbers and results so that a non-statistician both could understand AND be able to convey the numbers and results to others with clarity. Roland is smart, thorough, patient and displays a sense of humor at just the right times."

Laura M. Unflat, Attorney



"Roland's vast expertise in statistics and ease in manipulating SPSS have made this process manageable and at times, even fun. He has been consistently enthusiastic, endlessly patient, and always able to make complex statistical concepts understandable to a student with limited mathematical background. His teaching style is highly interactive and engaging. I have learned a great deal from Roland."

Shellie Simons, Ph.D.
Professor of Nursing
University of Massachusetts at Lowell



Visit my instructional/enrichment site at yellowbrickstats.com

yellow brick road





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