Are there any recommended books or online guides that will help budding statisticians with the consulting process?

I have a Master of Science degree in Statistics with limited consulting experience. I'd like to help graduate students with their thesis or dissertation.

I'm looking for books that describe the consulting process which also summarize the statistics involved.


More specifically, I am looking for material that involves statistics in the social sciences though books that draw examples from the biological and physical sciences are also welcome as long as they are not too specific to a particular topic. Cost is a consideration with less expensive options receiving preference. Discussion of statistical consulting as a business would also be helpful, i.e., sources that address questions like 'Do I ask the client to sign a limitation of liability document?' or 'Do I need business insurance for statistical consulting?'

  • $\begingroup$ This question seems rather broad. If possible, could you be more specific about the kinds of help you seek? $\endgroup$ – Glen_b Sep 19 '15 at 23:51
  • $\begingroup$ @Glen_b, thank you for the suggestion. I have tried to narrow down the topic as much as I could with the new edit. If you feel I am overlooking something please let me know $\endgroup$ – Parag Sep 20 '15 at 3:21

Statistical Sleuth does not describe the consulting process, but teaches methods using case studies. To quote:

The Sleuth was written to train graduate students in disciplines other than Statistics to correctly draw and communicate statistical conclusions for their Master's and Doctoral theses, and for their eventual careers as scientists.

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  • $\begingroup$ Thank you for suggesting this book. The table of contents has a wide range of statistical topics that I've seen in my courses, and the case studies involve a number of data sets that have received a lot of media attention like the space shuttle Challenger O-rings. $\endgroup$ – Parag Sep 19 '15 at 20:58

There is some books dedicated to that topic of training statistical consultants, I do not have personal experience with this books, but here are some: "Statistical Consulting" by Javier Cabrera and Andrew McDougall (had a positive review in the American Statistician)

"Statistical Consulting: A Guide to Effective Communication" by Janice Derr (but is too expensive!)

"Guide for the New Statistical Consultant: Some Suggestions and Three Key Questions to Ask" by Frederick Ruland.

The following could maybe be useful to have alook at: "Statistics Done Wrong: The Woefully Complete Guide" by Alex Reinhart

(there are more titles like this on amazon.com)

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Google books has excepts from "Statistical Consulting" by Cabrera and McDougall. The book by Reinhart is currently freely available as an online guide (he suggests buying the book if the website was useful). Yes, the book by Derr does seem expensive considering it more than 15 years old. The book by Ruland seems to be the best bargain out of these on Amazon. $\endgroup$ – Parag Sep 19 '15 at 21:19

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