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Identifying and Interpreting Statistics in Research Articles: Assessment 2 Answer

Subject Code and Title
STAT6000: Statistics for Public Health
Assessment 2: Assignment – Identifying and Interpreting Statistics in Research Articles
Learning Outcomes
This assessment addresses the following learning outcomes:
1. Understand key concepts in statistics and the way in which both descriptive and inferential statistics are used to measure, describe and predict health and illness and the effects of interventions.
  1. Apply key terms and concepts of statistics, including; sampling, hypothesis testing, validity and reliability, statistical significance and effect size.
  2. Interpret the results of commonly used statistical tests
presented in published literature.


This assessment requires you to read two articles and answer a series of questions in no more than 2000 words.

Most public health and wider health science journals report some form of statistics. The ability to understand and extract meaning from journal articles, and the ability to critically evaluate the statistics reported in research papers are fundamental skills in public health.

Paper 1: Lam, T., Liang, W., Chikritzhs, T., & Allsop, S. (2014). Alcohol and other drug use at school leavers' celebrations. Journal of Public Health, 36(3), 408-416. Retrieved from:

Read the Lam et. al. (2014) research article and answer the following questions:

  1. This paper presents two hypotheses. State the null and alternative hypothesis for each one, and describe the independent and dependent variables for each hypothesis.
  2. What kind of sampling method did they use, and what are the advantages and disadvantages of recruiting participants in this way?
  3. What are the demographic characteristics of the people in the sample? Explain by referring to the descriptive statistics reported in the paper.
  4. What inferential statistics were used to analyse data in this study, and why?
  5. What is the odds ratio for engaging in unprotected sex (compared with those who engaged in safety strategies with the greatest frequency)? Interpret this by explaining what the odds ratio is telling us, including any variables that were controlled for in the model.
  6. How representative do you think the sample is of the national population of schoolies? Explain why.

Paper 2: Wong, M. C., S., Leung, M. C., M., Tsang, C. S., H., . . . Griffiths, S. M. (2013). The rising tide of diabetes mellitus in a Chinese population: A population-based household survey on 121,895 persons. International Journal of Public Health, 58(2), 269-276. Retrieved from:

Read the Wong et. al. (2014) paper and answer the following questions:

  1. Describe the aims of the study. Can either aim be restated in terms of null and alternative hypotheses? Describe these where possible.
  2. What are the demographic characteristics of the people in the sample? Explain by referring to the descriptive statistics reported in the paper.
  3. What inferential statistics were used to analyse data in this paper, and why?
  4. What did the researchers find when they adjusted the prevalence rates of diabetes for age and sex?
  5. Interpret the odds ratios for self-reported diabetes diagnosis to explain who is at the greatest risk of diabetes.
  6. What impact do the limitations described by the researchers have on the extent to which the results can be trusted, and why?

Resources for Assessment 2

Assessment Criteria

Knowledge of sampling methods, and research and statistical concepts 20%

Interpretation of research concepts, statistical concepts and reported results, demonstrating applied knowledge and understanding 40 %

Critical analysis of research elements including sampling, results and limitations 30%

Academic writing (clarity of expression, correct grammar and punctuation, correct word use) and accurate use of APA referencing style 10%


Article review 

Paper 1: Alcohol and Other Drugs use at school leavers' celebrations.

Question no-1. 

The paper presents two hypotheses, the null hypothesis is the students who consume Alcohol and other Drugs usage at school leavers' celebrations and the alternative hypothesis are that the students who are not among the crowd which consumes alcohol and other drugs in their schooling days. Conventionally, it has been a long-standing culture of consuming alcohol and other drugs in the school leavers' party and this phenomenon is frequently happening from past so many years and it is increasing year-by-year. Alcohol consumption is very common in school days or school leavers' parties nowadays. On the other end of this hypothesis, some few students do not engage in these forms of parties and do not consume alcohol and other drugs in their schooling life or tenure. Some of these students further start consuming alcohol and drugs in their college years or. There are many independent and dependent variables in both hypotheses. The independent variable for such a hypothesis includes the social culture of the country and western culture. The students also enter these school leavers' party as their holiday, these risky behaviors are partially attributed to the 'holiday effect', a phenomenon in which an individual on holiday tend to engage in risky behaviors and does not otherwise attempt in the home. The dependent factors involve the peer pressure and the environment of the school and the hype which is made before the celebrations (Merga, & Hu, 2016).

Question no 2. 

The Core data for this hypothesis project was gathered using a two-part survey design with a self-report methodology. These surveys were conducted before the celebration day and post celebration. The surveys were also started 2 months prior of the celebration day to ensure and collect the data for the survey accurately and also to take measurements for the consumption of alcohol and drugs at these parties, also to aware the students about the adverse effects of the consumption of alcohol and drugs. These surveys were conducted face-to-face at the entry and exit points of the celebrations and also on the island in which the celebrations were taking place. The first survey was about the students who intended to attend these school leavers' party and celebrations. These pre celebrations surveys were the available both online and face-to-face basis. The advantages of these both surveys include many aspects and ratios. These surveys state the clear image of the age groups and number of students which tend to involve and gets involved in these school leavers' party. It also helps to create a very good and resourceful data for the research. The disadvantages of these surveys include the cost of engaging the students into the surveys is a bit high, also there are repeated students who engage in these surveys. One of the disadvantages of these surveys is also the truthfulness of the students who participate in these surveys (Irwin, Hill, & Hutton, 2018).

Question no 3. 

The demographic location also plays a vital role in these school leavers' events. This also plays a vital role in conducting surveys. The surveys were conducted on Rottnest Island, which is located 20 km off the west coast of Perth and is a popular location for events in Western Australia. Rottnest Island is a popular location for such events and parties so this place is admired by the young students to tend to go to such locations for such events like this. The Island is always an independent place and remote so the students who attend parties in such places are free from the things opposing them to use drugs and alcohol, so the rate for all these increases. The second survey was disseminated on the first day of the celebrations on five of the ferries traveling to Rottnest Island. The post-celebration survey was completed by 405 in which 50% were the females in which 94% of the females were 17 years of age and remaining 6% were 18 or above (Jongenelis, et al. 2017).

Question no-4

In this survey at, Rottnest Island near Perth, Australia, the total number of people who participated in the event were 1466, from which the first survey was conducted from 541 people who tended to attend the school leavers' party. The post-celebration survey was conducted from 405 people who have attended the event. In total from 1466 people who attended the event, 37% of the population from the event was surveyed with a pre-celebration survey and 28% percent for the post celebrations. A series of rank tests were performed to compare the Adolescent use of other drugs and alcohol consumption between the context of the last event they attended with friends and an average day at leavers' party. This strategy was used to analyze the consumption rate of alcohol and other drugs with their friends and at their school leavers' day. The surveys used this data to research on the adverse effects of the consumption of alcohol and like blackouts and vomiting etc., and also the effects after taking the protective strategies for these adverse effects.

Question no 5. 

There are many adverse effects of consumption of alcohol at such a young age which includes hangover, emotional outburst, vomiting, heated argument, accident, physically aggression, blackout, engaging in unprotected sex. Unprotected sex is one of the most common phenomena occurred in seventeen days. Out of all the participant who was surveyed by the research team there were a total of 13% of the people who had unprotected sex while the tenure of the event, from which some people regretted the sexual encounter and some were not happy about the sexual situation. Figures from the survey suggest that out of total 13% from the overall population at the event has unprotected sex, 15.38% people from the above percent were not happy about at the time of the sexual situation, and 21.33% of the people regretted their sexual encounter. 10.92% percent of the population from the above total of 13% of the people were aware and took the safety strategy use (PBSS).

Question no 6. 

This report and hypothesis show that the consumptions of Alcohol and Drugs in the school leavers' does create an adverse effect on the young people which suffers from many problems like vomiting, blackouts and other problems. This data more or less shows the increasing rate of consumption of alcohol and other drugs in early ages. This piece of the report even represents all overconsumption of alcohol and other drugs across the country. Demographically this report has a number of the students who engage in this act of consuming alcohol and other drugs, this location encourages the involvement of drugs and other issues. Across the country, the average consumption of across the country is less than the average of this report.

Paper 2 -The Rising Tide of Diabetes Mellitus in a Chinese Population 

Question 1

This report is based on the rising tide of Diabetes Mellitus (type 2) in the Chinese Population. The survey for making this report was based on a survey conducted on household population. This survey was conducted on 121,895 people. The study aimed to find the rising trend of self-reporting of Diabetes Mellitus in Chinese household and the factors related to the disease. The aim can be restated as the disease like diabetes is increasing day-by-day in Chinese household and even all across the globe. All over the world, the patients of diabetes are rising whether it's a developed country or a developing county. An alternative hypothesis can be done on this subject as there are many factors which are not considered in this study and research report (Abdelmalek, 2016). 

Question 2

The research which is conducted from 121,895 includes many factors which include demographic factors for ascertaining the results. The surveys are conducted in the city of Hong-Kong, which is one of the most fastest-growing economic city in Asia. In Hong-Kong, the disease is detected in early ages among the younger individuals with high-risk factors as heightened awareness about the disease and earlier diagnosis and more effective community-based health education programs. The demographic factors also include the lifestyle of the people of the city, the lifestyle of Hong-Kong is very urbanized and western that the chances of suffering from this disease are very often. 

Question 3

This report is based on the self-collected information and the surveys, the conclusions of the survey are realized from the survey done by their own in the years 2001, 2002, 2005, and 2008 respectively. The surveys evaluated the trend of self-reporting diabetes within a population of the city of Hong-Kong. A value of 121,895 people participated in these four years of collecting data and research. The surveys were done in the respect of age, sex, households incomes. Binary logistic regression analyses were conducted to study the independent factors associated with diabetes (Hampel, & Lista, 2016). 

Question 4

A total of 33609, 29561, 29802, and 28923 interviews were successfully conducted in the years 2001, 2002, 2005 and 2008 respectively. Among 103,367 were adults aged above 15 years or the same. Their average age was 38.2 years. The age-adjusted prevalence of diabetes among male adults wad 2.80, 2.87, 3.32 and 4.66% in the years 2001, 2002, 2005, 2008 respectively. Among females adults, the respective prevalence was 3.25, 3.37, 3.77 and 4.31%. The adjusted prevalence in both sex groups showed a drastic rise with the increasing age. There was a progressive rising trend of self-reported diabetes across the years 2001-2008in the age groups >75years (Wong, et al. 2013). 

Question 5

The people who are at the greatest risk of diabetes are the people who are living in urban cities and poor people. In this study, it is concluded that the people who are living in developed cities are more likely to suffer from the disease like diabetes because of the lifestyle which they live. These cities are more towards the western cultures and urbanized in such a way that the people live in it suffer from the disease. Also in this report, it is shown that the people who are poor and who do not have high household incomes also suffer from this disease (Roberts, & Nippita, 2015).

Question 6

The research is done on a mass people in the context of Age, Sex and Income ranges of the people. These reports are prepared from the data collected from the years 2001, 2002, 2005 and 2008. The report is made up of the data collected on their own. The data was collected in very standardized methods used with a proper interviewer training were identical across different periods. The population-based random sampling method facilitated generalizability of the findings and the statistical adjustment made to the prevalence figures minimized the effect of demographic changes in different years (Carruthers, 2017). 

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