Skip to main content

Bayesian Statistics

Level
Beginner

Neuromatch Academy aims to introduce traditional and emerging tools of computational neuroscience to trainees. It is appropriate for student population ranging from undergraduates to faculty in academic settings and also includes industry professionals. In addition to teaching the technical details of computational methods, Neuromatch Academy also provide a curriculum centered on modern neuroscience concepts taught by leading professors along with explicit instruction on how and why to apply models. 

 

This course introduces the concept of Bayesian statistics and explains why Bayesian statistics are relevant to studying the brain.

Course Features
Lectures
Interactive Tutorials
Discussion Forum
Suggested Reading
Recordings of question and answer sessions
Lessons of this Course
1
1
Duration:
31:38

Neuromatch Academy aims to introduce traditional and emerging tools of computational neuroscience to trainees. It is appropriate for student population ranging from undergraduates to faculty in academic settings and also includes industry professionals. In addition to teaching the technical details of computational methods, Neuromatch Academy also provide a curriculum centered on modern neuroscience concepts taught by leading professors along with explicit instruction on how and why to apply models. 

 

This lecture introduces the concept of Bayesian statistics and explains why Bayesian statistics are relevant to studying the brain.

2
2
Duration:
5:13

This tutorial provides an introduction to Bayesian statistics and covers developing a Bayesian model for localizing sounds based on audio and visual cues. This model will combine prior information about where sounds generally originate with sensory information about the likelihood that a specific sound came from a particular location. The resulting posterior distribution not only allows us to make optimal decision about the sound's origin, but also lets us quantify how uncertain that decision is. Bayesian techniques are therefore useful normative models: the behavior of human or animal subjects can be compared against these models to determine how efficiently they make use of information.

Overview of this tutorial

  1. Implement a Gaussian distribution
  2. Use Bayes' Theorem to find the posterior from a Gaussian-distributed prior and likelihood.
  3. Change the likelihood mean and variance and observe how posterior changes.
  4. Advanced (optional): Observe what happens if the prior is a mixture of two gaussians?
3
3
Duration:
4:22

In this tutorial, we will use the concepts introduced in tutorial 1 as building blocks to explore more complicated sensory integration and ventriloquism! 

 

Overview of tutorial

  1. Learn more about the problem setting, which we will also use in Tutorial 3
  2. Implement a mixture-of-Gaussian prior
  3. Explore how that prior produces more complex posteriors
4
4
Duration:
2:40

This tutorial covers computing all the necessary steps to perform model inversion (estimate the model parameters such as 𝑝𝑐𝑜𝑚𝑚𝑜𝑛 that generated data similar to that of a participant). We will describe all the steps of the generative model first, and in the last exercise we will use all these steps to estimate the parameter 𝑝𝑐𝑜𝑚𝑚𝑜𝑛 of a single participant using simulated data.

The generative model will be the same Bayesian model we have been using throughout tutorial 2: a mixture of Gaussian prior (common + independent priors) and a Gaussian likelihood.

5
5
Duration:
5:10

This tutorial focuses on Bayesian Decision Theory, which combines the posterior with cost functions that allow us to quantify the potential impact of making a decision or choosing an action based on that posterior. Cost functions are therefore critical for turning probabilities into actions!

 

Overview of this tutorial:

  1. Implement three commonly-used cost functions: mean-squared error, absolute error, and zero-one loss
  2. Discover the concept of expected loss
  3. Choose optimal locations on the posterior that minimize these cost functions
6
6
Duration:
26:01
Speaker:

Neuromatch Academy aims to introduce traditional and emerging tools of computational neuroscience to trainees. It is appropriate for student population ranging from undergraduates to faculty in academic settings and also includes industry professionals. In addition to teaching the technical details of computational methods, Neuromatch Academy also provide a curriculum centered on modern neuroscience concepts taught by leading professors along with explicit instruction on how and why to apply models. 

 

This lecture focuses on advanced uses of Bayesian statistics for understanding the brain.