Multivariate methods for ecologists

Last changed: 31 October 2023
An ordination plot with plant species names, graph.

A PhD student course in applied multivariate statistics, primarily for ecologists but suitable for related subject areas. The whole course will be on-line and we welcome both Swedish and international participants.

Next course occasion

Next course occasion is not yet decided, but will be during autumn 2024. We do not accept applications before the call (expected June 2024), but we can put interested students on the send list.


The course aims to illustrate the application of a number of multivariate methods on ecological data. Following the course, participants should be familiar with different multivariate techniques, and how they can be applied on various types of data. The course will focus on developing an understanding of the application of multivariate techniques, with only a minimum amount of effort placed on comprehending the underlying mathematical detail.

After the course, the students should be able to analyse multivariate ecological data using R.


A number of ordination and classification procedures will be demonstrated, such as cluster analysis, correspondence analysis (CA), canonical correspondence analysis (CCA), redundancy analysis (RDA), principle components analysis (PCA), partial least square-analysis (PLS) and more. The course literature consists of 10 papers that will be distributed at the start of the course.

The course is given in two parts. Part 1 consists of lectures and calculation exercises, and part 2 is a supervised project on your own data. You can take either only part 1, or the full course. Part 1 gives 3 credits, and the full course 4.5 credits.