Agnes Scott College

Sir David Cox and Nancy Reid

The Theory of the Design of Experiments
Chapman & Hall/CRC, 2000


Preface (excerpts)

This book is an account of the major topics in the design of experiments, with particular emphasis on the key concepts involved and on the statistical structure associated with these concepts. While design of experiments is in many ways a very well developed area of statistics, it often receives less emphasis than methods of analysis in a programme of study in statistics.

We have written for a general audience concerned with statistics in experimental fields and with some knowledge of and interest in theoretical issues. The mathematical level is mostly elementary; occasional passages using more advanced ideas can be skipped or omitted without inhibiting understanding of later passages. Some specialized parts of the subject have extensive and specialized literatures, a few examples being incomplete block designs, mixture designs, designs for large variety trials, designs based on spatial stochastic models and designs constructed from explicit optimality requirements. We have aimed to give relatively brief introductions to these subjects eschewing technical details.

To motivate the discussion we give outline Illustration taken from a range of areas of application. In addition we give a limited number of Examples, mostly taken from the literature, used for the different purpose of showing detailed methods of analysis without much emphasis on specific subject-matter interpretation.


  1. Some general concepts
  2. Avoidance of bias
  3. Control of haphazard variation
  4. Specialized blocking techniques
  5. Factorial designs: basic ideas
  6. Factorial designs: further topics
  7. Optimal design
  8. Some additional topics
  1. Statistical analysis
  2. Some algebra
  3. Computational issues