Strengthening capacity building in data analysis in West African Universities and research institutions: A three-year experience of the Master Programme in Biostatistics at the University of Abomey-Calavi, Benin

Scientific research plays a key role in development, especially in economic growth of countries. Scientific innovations, the main outcome of scientific research, require the use of modern statistical and mathematical methods in research works. In Africa, especially sub-Saharan Africa, Statistics is underutilized and some situations misused in biological researches. The master programme in Statistics, major Biostatistics at the University of Abomey-Calavi has been created and implemented by the Laboratory of Biomathematics and Forest Estimations at the Faculty of Agronomic Sciences in order to fill this gap. This master programme has four semesters and is taught in English with lecturers mainly coming from Benin and Togo, but also some come from United States of America (USA) and Belgium. Analysis of the three-year experience of this programme reveals an increasing trend of the number of students involved with a total of 44 students coming from 12 African countries. Defense of the first batch of students in this master programme (24-29 February, 2016) targeted some modern statistical and mathematical methods including linear and non-linear mixed effects models, matrix projection models, ordination methods, generalized linear models, survival analyses and efficiency analyses with applications in biology. The current challenges linked to this master programme can be lessened through a partnership with the Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM), universities and research institutions in other countries in West Africa (Ghana, Nigeria), Eastern Africa (Uganda, Kenya) and Southern African (South Africa) to share and improve curricula in Biostatistics training.

Prof. Adipala, Ekwamu
Dr. Paul, Nampala
Issue Date:
Mar 24 2017
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Record Identifier:
Published in:
African Journal of Rural Development (AFJRD), Volume 1, Issue 3
Page range:
247 -253

 Record created 2017-09-22, last modified 2018-01-23

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