I am a data scientist with background in quantitative methods and interest in data-driven models of human aging.
I received my Ph.D. in Quantitative Methods in 2014 from Vanderbilt University, where I studied under Dr. Joe Rodgers, specializing in statistical modeling, design of graphical displays of information, and reproducible research. In August of the same year I joined the Integrative Analysis of Longitudinal Studies of Aging (IALSA) network (NIH/NIA P01AG043362) at the University of Victoria (UVic), directed by Dr. Andrea Piccinin and Dr. Scott Hofer. With IALSA, I worked on developing reproducible analytics (R + GitHub) for remote collaboration, particularly for implementing coordinated statistical analyses among multiple longitudinal studies of aging via remote participation.
Interest in data-driven narratives of human aging lead me to explore the use of electronic health records (EHR) for research and improvement of patient care. Since October 2015 I have been working with Dr. Kenneth Moselle, the director of the Applied Clinical Research Unit (ACRU) of Vancouver Island Health Authority (VIHA) on curating the transformation of VIHA’s EHR into analyzable form and creating opportunities for academic and clinical researchers to work with these data in responsible and reproducible way. Together with Dr. Moselle I have launched a Data Science Studio at the University of Victoria, a research unit at the Institute on Aging and Lifelong Health dedicated to supporting its research affiliates and UVic students in accessing, handling, and modeling cross-continuum health records of VIHA.
At ACRU I worked on bridging healthcare data to analytic capacities of longitudinal modelling. My functions at ACRU included statistical and programming support for research and quality improvement projects, coordinating communication and empowering collaboration among three audiences: database managers, medical practitioners, and academic researchers. The overlap in my skills in statistical modeling, programming, and knowledge of VIHA’s electronic health records gave me a unique advantage to facilitate such a collaboration, the integrative nature of which offered great promises for improving patient care, medical science, and methodological practices of longitudinal research.
In August of 2017 I was awarded a CIHR Health System Impact Fellowship with BC Observatory for Population and Public Health of the BC Centre for Disease Control ($140,000 + $15,000 development fund). My program of work involved developing a system for population health surveillance that would focus on chronic diseases, with particular focus on mental health and substance use (MHSU) conditions, which tend to have high comorbidity rates, polysubstance use patterns, and slowly progressing pace of development. Drawing on my experience with EHR system employed by VIHA, I engaged various statistical modeling and learning techniques to construct analytic workflows capable of supporting clinical decisions at the point of service, while translating the acquired knowledge to be consumed by clinical stewards, system planners, and surveillance agencies.Download my CV
PhD in Quantitative Methods, 2014
MA in Quantitative Psychology, 2008
Middle Tennessee State University
BS in Mass Communication, 2005
Middle Tennessee State University
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Replicating multistate models of cognitive decline across longitudinal studies of ageing and estimating healthy life expectancies.
Data science of harmonization: an approach to implementing and annotating harmonization decisions
IALSA-2017-Portland workshop performs a coordinated analysis with replication (CAwR) across 10 longitudinal studies investigating the decline in physical and cognitive functioning during later adulthood using bivariate growth curve models.
My research practice is tightly intertwined with my teaching philosophy: I am a strong proponent of open science, reproducible research, and programming literacy among scientists. While at University of Victoria, Dr. Andrea Piccinin and I received a teaching grant ($10,000) to develop an Introduction to Statistical Modeling for Social Sciences for graduate students that emphasized these skills and allowed students to develop practical, hands-on data science skills, while retaining the focus and rigor of an introductory statistical course.
In the summer of 2017, Dr. Ken Moselle and I were invited by Dr. Scott Hofer to co-develop an experimental course on Statistical Analysis of Administrative Health and Linked Longitudinal Encounter Data aimed at fostering the development of novel research tracks employing clinical transactional data of VIHA. Approaching teaching as training my future colleagues brought me generous dividends, both in terms of positive student evaluations, fulfilling professional relationships, and active partnerships for my current and future work. Looking forward, I would like to capitalize on my experience in organizing and managing multinational teams of researchers to develop learning environments that could bring people together via remote participation and make the most out of online learning.