Department of Pediatrics Statistical Unit


The goal of the Department of Pediatrics Statistical Unit (DPSU) is to enhance the quality and quantity of research for the trainees and members of the Department.  Its scope is to provide consultative advice regarding selection of best statistical approaches for a given research question and study design.


Hourly consultation.  Our primary service is to offer one-on-one statistical consultation on an hourly basis.  The consultation may include advice on, for example:

The consultation should not be focused on developing/framing an investigator’s research question or designing the study.  It is the investigator’s responsibility to have these concepts reasonably developed (with colleagues or mentors) before seeking advice from the DPSU.

Drop-in Advice Sessions

Research Design. The DPSU offers free drop-in advice about general research methods and study design. Professor Suzan Carmichael will consult with you for 15–20 minutes about your question to help you determine the best way to address it. This drop-in session is held in Medical School Office Building, Room X111, and takes place Fridays 12–1 PM.

Statistics. These drop-in advice sessions are canceled as of August 23, 2014 until further notice.

Grants.  DPSU staff will be available to review written analytic sections of grant proposals and provide advice.  With approval from the DPSU prior to submission, investigators may include DPSU staff as personnel with salary support in their grant proposals.  You may download the DPSU description for the “Resources” section and/or budget justification of your grant proposal.

Other.  Please let us know if you need other types of services, and we will see if we can meet your request or provide suggestions for how to meet it.  In addition, a list of alternative statistical resources is provided on our resources page.

Please click here to request services.


DPSU services are available to all faculty, trainees, and analytic staff whose primary appointment is at least 0.5 FTE in the Department of Pediatrics.  Although we do not propose to limit an individual investigator’s use of the DPSU, operationally we prefer that no one investigator dominate a large proportion of the statistician’s time in a given week.  This preference may be reflected in how we schedule appointments.


John Tamaresis, PhD, is a full-time Statistician for the Unit. Dr. Tamaresis received his PhD in Applied Mathematics from the University of California, Davis and his Master’s degree in Statistics from the California State University, East Bay.  He has extensive experience collaborating with life scientists and clinicians.  His combined expertise in mathematics and statistics provides collaborators with essential skills to perform complex analyses and customize analytics for their specific project.


The unit is headed by Dr. Suzan Carmichael, who supervises staff and will oversee the development of the unit. Workflow is coordinated and managed by Ms. Jennifer Cory, who also acts as the administrative point of contact for the staff. An advisory committee will meet three times per year to assess the overall function of the unit and how well it is meeting the needs of the department.  This committee is chaired by Dr. Gary Shaw, Associate Chair for Clinical Research, and includes Drs. Suzan Carmichael, Cornelia Dekker, Yvonne Maldonado, Thomas Robinson, and Krisa Van Meurs. Ms. Cory will attend committee meetings as needed to provide reports and address administrative needs.


Services are billed at $75 per hour.  Billed time includes face-to-face meeting time with the statistician but may extend beyond that if time is needed after the consultation to fulfill the request.  This model only represents partial cost recovery; the remaining cost of managing and running the unit is subsidized by the Department.

Future Plans

We continue to explore ways to expand the services of the unit to meet needs of all levels of investigators in the Department. Approaches under consideration include providing group-level training opportunities such as lecture series or topic-focused discussions, developing a resource library of on-line training tools, and establishing a referral network of investigators with more specialized types of statistical expertise and of analytic staff who can assist with programming or data management. Please let us know if you have additional suggestions or questions about any of these approaches.

Questions and Feedback

If you have any questions or feedback please contact Jennifer Cory, Director of Research for the Department of Pediatrics.

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