Bayesian Methods for Prevention Research

Prev Sci. 2015 Oct;16(7):1017-25. doi: 10.1007/s11121-014-0531-x.


Bayesian statistics represents a paradigm shift in statistical reasoning and an approach to analysis that is applicable to prevention trials with small samples. This paper introduces the reader to the philosophy behind Bayesian statistics. This introduction is followed by a review of some issues that arise in sampling statistics and how Bayesian methods address them. Finally, the article provides an extended illustration of the application of Bayesian statistics to data from a prevention trial that tested a family-focused intervention.

Keywords: Bayesian statistics; Causation; Counterfactual; Intervention; Prediction.

MeSH terms

  • Bayes Theorem*
  • Humans
  • Models, Theoretical
  • Preventive Health Services*