Notes on statistics and data quality for analytical chemists

Notes on statistics and data quality for analytical chemists

Michael Thompson and Philip J Lowthian

London UK: Imperial College Press 2011 | 260pp | ?30 (PB)

ISBN 9781848166172

Reviewed by Richard Brereton


© Imperial College Press

Mike Thompson from Birkbeck College, London, is the senior author of this book and a well known authority in statistical analytical chemistry, having 

published frequently in this area for over 40 years. The two authors are particularly passionate advocates of data integrity in analytical chemistry.

The focus here is on univariate methods for measuring concentration with confidence. A good feature is that there are several datasets that can be downloaded and used to check your understanding of the text. The book is organised into 12 chapters, each of which could realistically be used as a module or section of a teaching course.

The text covers basic, core concepts in traditional analytical chemistry, such as ideas about probability, hypothesis testing, regression and analysis of variance. The later chapters cover topics closer to the authors’ research interests, such as sampling theory and quality control.

The book is a good description of basic statistical techniques for analytical chemists, although it does not stray into areas such as optimisation, experimental design, chemometrics or multivariate analysis.

There are a number of well established competitors on the market, however this book is definitely useful for a well stocked teaching lab and as reference for practicing analysts.