Date of Award

Fall 12-2016

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Mathematics and Statistics

First Advisor

Dr. Xin Qi


We propose a new method to perform functional principal component analysis (FPCA) for discretely observed functional data by solving successive optimization problems. The new framework can be applied to both regularly and irregularly observed data, and to both dense and sparse data. Our method does not require estimates of the individual sample functions or the covariance functions. Hence, it can be used to analyze functional data with multidimensional arguments (e.g. random surfaces). Furthermore, it can be applied to many processes and models with complicated or nonsmooth covariance functions. In our method, smoothness of eigenfunctions is controlled by directly imposing roughness penalties on eigenfunctions, which makes it more efficient and flexible to tune the smoothness. Efficient algorithms for solving the successive optimization problems are proposed. We provide the existence and characterization of the solutions to the successive optimization problems. The consistency of our method is also proved. Through simulations, we demonstrate that our method performs well in the cases with smooth samples curves, with discontinuous sample curves and nonsmooth covariance and with sample functions having two dimensional arguments (random surfaces), repectively. We apply our method to classification problems of retinal pigment epithelial cells in eyes of mice and to longitudinal CD4 counts data. In the second part of this dissertation, we propose a sparse Fisher’s discriminant analysis method with thresholded linear constraints. Various regularized linear discriminant analysis (LDA) methods have been proposed to address the problems of the LDA in high-dimensional settings. Asymptotic optimality has been established for some of these methods when there are only two classes. A difficulty in the asymptotic study for the multiclass classification is that for the two-class classification, the classification boundary is a hyperplane and an explicit formula for the classification error exists, however, in the case of multiclass, the boundary is usually complicated and no explicit formula for the error generally exists. Another difficulty in proving the asymptotic consistency and optimality for sparse Fisher’s discriminant analysis is that the covariance matrix is involved in the constraints of the optimization problems for high order components. It is not easy to estimate a general high-dimensional covariance matrix. Thus, we propose a sparse Fisher’s discriminant analysis method which avoids the estimation of the covariance matrix, provide asymptotic consistency results and the corresponding convergence rates for all components. To prove the asymptotic optimality, we provide an asymptotic upper bound for a general linear classification rule in the case of muticlass which is applied to our method to obtain the asymptotic optimality and the corresponding convergence rate. In the special case of two classes, our method achieves the same as or better convergence rates compared to the existing method. The proposed method is applied to multivariate functional data with wavelet transformations.