ISSN 1069-1898

An International Journal on the Teaching and Learning of Statistics

JSE Volume 21, Number 2 Abstracts


George Cobb
What might a twenty-year old conference tell us about the future of our profession?

The 1993 inaugural issue of the Journal of Statistics Education (JSE) published an article about a small conference for Principal Investigators (PIs) and co-PIs of twelve projects in statistics education funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF).  This twenty-year retrospective (1) offers some personal memories related to the founding of JSE, (2) offers some thoughts about the legacies of the twelve funded projects, (3) sets out a sense of how the conference themes have fared over the last twenty years, and (4) indicates what this might suggest about the future of our profession.  In conclusion, I argue (briefly) that at this moment in its history, statistics education faces the biggest opportunity and challenge of its last 40 years.

Key Words: Statistics education; NSF; Assessment; Activities; Simulation; TQM; Randomization; Bayes.

Joan Garfield
Cooperative Learning Revisited: From an Instructional Method to a Way of Life

As I look back over 20 years, I see how collaboration has become the cornerstone of my beliefs about teaching and learning and about my own professional development and productivity. While I once viewed cooperative learning as solely a pedagogical method, I now view collaborative learning as my ongoing way of life. It is a defining characteristic of all my work, whether teaching, creating curriculum and assessment, conducting research, and writing.  Not only does collaboration make my work more enjoyable and sociable, it makes me think harder, defend or revise my ideas, and become more creative in brainstorming or problem solving. As a result, collaboration greatly improves the quality of every product I help to create. Standing firmly on my soapbox, I begin this paper with a brief look backwards at my first exposure to cooperative learning and my early use of this method as a teacher.  Then, I describe my journey as a practitioner of cooperative learning, teaching, and scholarship.

Key Words: Cooperative learning; Statistics Education; Assessment; Teaching.

Amy G. Froelich and Dan Nettleton
Does my baby really look like me? Using Tests For Resemblance Between Parent and Child to Teach Topics in Categorical Data Analysis

In this article, we present a study to test whether neutral observers perceive a resemblance between a parent and a child. We demonstrate the general approach for two separate parent/child pairs using survey data collected from introductory statistics students serving as neutral observers. We then present ideas for incorporating the study design process, data collection, and analysis into different statistics courses from introductory to graduate level.

Key Words: Classroom example; Survey data; Tests for binomial probabilities; Tests for multinomial probabilities.

M. Ryan Haley
The "Core Concepts Plus"¯ Paradigm for Creating an Electronic Textbook for Introductory Business and Economic Statistics

This paper describes a flexible paradigm for creating an electronic “Core Concepts Plus” textbook (CCP-text) for a course in Introductory Business and Economic Statistics (IBES). In general terms, “core concepts” constitute the intersection of IBES course material taught by all IBES professors at the author’s university. The “Plus” component of the paradigm is embodied in self-written, professor-specific sections that are combined with the core-concepts material to produce professor-specific versions of the IBES CCP-text. The paradigm entails a vertically integrated text creation process with two primary aspects: first, non-IBES faculty members that ultimately receive former IBES students are included in the text-writing process; second, some former IBES students (e.g., tutors) are included in the text-writing process. Student learning experiences with the CCP-text are summarized with survey results; the learning outcomes are assessed using three semesters of pre- and post-test data; and a textbook cost study is used to contextualize the savings to students. The CCP-text appears to be efficacious in all three of these areas. Recommendations concerning how and where the paradigm might be replicated are also presented.

Key Words: Textbook Costs; Textbook Rental Programs; Professor-Specific Textbooks.

Interviews with Statistics Educators

Allan Rossman, E. Jacquelin Dietz, and David Moore
Interview with David Moore

David Moore is Professor Emeritus of Statistics at Purdue University. He served as the first President of the International Association for Statistical Education (IASE) from 1993-1995 and as President of the American Statistical Association (ASA) in 1998. He is a Fellow of the ASA and of the IMS and was awarded the ASA’s Founders Award in 2001. He has written several influential, widely used textbooks for introductory statistics. This interview took place via email on May 3, 2013 through June 12, 2013.

Teaching Bits

Audbjorg Bjornsdottir
Teaching Bits: Statistics Education Articles from 2013

I located 27 articles that have been published from January through July 2013 that pertained to statistics education. In this column, I highlight a few of these articles that represent a variety of different journals that include statistics education in their focus. I also provide information about the journal and a link to the journal's website so that abstracts of additional articles may be
accessed and viewed.

Camille Fairbourn and Megan Mocko
Teaching Bits: What's New with CAUSEweb and MERLOT?

Many new things are going on with CAUSEweb and MERLOT, and the purpose of this short article is to share some important updates with the greater statistics education community.


Data Sets and Stories

George Ehrhardt
The Not-so-Random Drunkard's Walk

This dataset contains the results of a quasi-experiment, testing Karl Pearson's "drunkard's walk" analogy for an abstract random walk.  Inspired by the alternate hypothesis that drunkards stumble to the side of their dominant hand, it includes data on intoxicated test subjects walking a 10' line.  Variables include: the direction to which subjects first stumbled, the side of the line on which they ended up, and a record of subjects' dominant hand.  In addition to enhancing a discussion of the random walk itself, instructors may find this dataset useful for teaching tests of sample proportions.

Key Words: Data Set and Story; Random Walk; Probability; Test of Sample Proportion.


Amy G. Froelich and W. Robert Stephenson
Does eye color depend on gender? It Might Depend on Who or How You Ask

As a part of an opening course survey, data on eye color and gender were collected from students enrolled in an introductory statistics course at a large university over a recent four year period. Biologically, eye color and gender are independent traits. However, in the data collected from our students, there is a statistically significant dependence between the two variables. In this article, we present two ideas for using this data set in the classroom, and explore the potential reasons for the dependence between the two variables in the population of our students.

Key Words: Student data; Contingency table; Independence; Probability.


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