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The course is suitable for all MSD postgraduate research students and early career researchers wanting to analyse and compare their biological data using model fitting. No prior statistical knowledge is required.



Experimental biologists often need to compare the outcome of multiple treatments when data is collected over multiple doses or time points. In this workshop, we will explain how to make statistical comparisons between different curves using model fitting. We will highlight how this procedure provides mechanistic insight that is not readily available if the experiment was carried out at a single dose or time point.

No prior knowledge of mathematical modelling or statistics will be assumed and discussion will be restricted to tools available in Graphpad Prism. Participants are encouraged to bring their own data, which they can analyse with assistance in the last section of the course.



Part 1. Motivation

Examples of common biological data where fitting models can be used to test hypotheses.

Part 2. How does model fitting work?

An introduction to the basics of how models are fit to data, including how to assess the quality of the fit. A practical demonstration in GraphPad Prism is provided.

Part 3. How can we compare multiple datasets using model fitting?

An introduction to comparing curves using model fitting, including how to obtain p-values for relevant comparisons. A practical demonstration in GraphPad Prism is provided.

Part 4. Summary

Part 5/6. Practical Open Sessions (Optional)

The final part of the course involves ‘hands-on’ experience with GraphPad Prism. Exercises and Case Studies are provided that will guide participants to carry out model fitting and hypothesis testing in GraphPad Prism. Participants are also encouraged to bring and analyse their own data.



At the end of the course, participants will be able to

  • Identify examples of biological data where model fitting is useful
  • Understand how to fit biological data to models
  • Compare two data sets using model fitting


The course is 2 hours with 1 hour focused on a lecture and practical demonstrations (Part 1-4) with a second hour focused on a hands-on session where participants analyse data using Prism (Part 5/6).


To benefit from Part 5/6, you will need your laptop with a copy of GraphPad Prism installed. A 30-day trial version of Prism is available for download or it can be purchased for a small fee through your IT department (MSD IT has low cost pooled licenses).


Maximum 40