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Questions tagged [teaching]

For questions about the teaching of probability and statistics, at any level.

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8
votes
2answers
821 views

Vector calculus in statistics

I'm teaching a class on integration of functions of several variables and vector calculus this semester. The class is made up most of economics majors and engineering majors, with a smattering of math ...
15
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8answers
33k views

Any suggestions for a good undergraduate introductory textbook to statistics?

I am hoping you can give me some suggestions. I am teaching in a very diverse (made of minority groups) college and the students are mostly Psychology majors. Most students are fresh from high school ...
4
votes
1answer
226 views

how would you approach giving an introductory class about Bayesian statistics?

I need to give a lecture about Bayesian statistics, introducing it to people who have already basic knowledge of classic statistics (but not too much of it in general). I want to start with some ...
15
votes
11answers
3k views

Examples of processes that are not Poisson?

I am looking for some good examples of situations that are ill-suited to model with a Poisson distribution, to help me explain the Poisson distribution to students. One commonly uses the number of ...
30
votes
5answers
6k views

Strategies for teaching the sampling distribution

The tl;dr version What successful strategies do you employ to teach the sampling distribution (of a sample mean, for example) at an introductory undergraduate level? The background In September I'll ...
13
votes
1answer
2k views

Funny statistics exam answers [closed]

Correcting exams is probably the most boring task of a teacher. But it might be amusing for us to collect funny statistics exam answers. One entry per answer.
3
votes
2answers
240 views

Goals for students in an introductory course?

I am studying Statistics for business at introductory level, and having difficulty in handling the amount of information, partly because I am coming back to study after 5 years and I didn't do much ...
41
votes
5answers
4k views

Good games for learning statistical thinking?

Are there any games that get the player "think like a statistician"? For example, lightbot gets you to "think like a programmer" (in a very basic way). Are there any games - designed for ...
13
votes
2answers
1k views

Explaining quantile regression to nonstatisticians

I recently submitted a paper, in which I used quantile regression, to a psychology journal. Although I thought I had already put enough thought in a clear exposition of quantile regression, the ...
10
votes
3answers
24k views

Class activities/experiments to teach statistical concepts?

I intend to give a one hour lecture to teenagers about statistics. I will probably see them only once. This scenario might happen over and over. I would like to give them some activity to make them ...
28
votes
4answers
4k views

Self study vs a taught education?

There is a question with similar intent on programmers.SE. That question has some quite good answers, but the general theme seems to be that without self study, you get no-where. Obviously there are ...
4
votes
1answer
470 views

What factors make for a great stats book? [closed]

What factors make for a great statistics book? In other words, what writing styles, visualizations, explanatory methodologies, text length(!), tone, depth, etc, etc contribute to giving the audience a ...
5
votes
4answers
492 views

What are some good (ideally free) tools to give laymen access to basic statistical techniques?

I have been a contract worker for two different companies now, which means I show up at a place for 3-6 months and blow their minds with my awesomeness, but then, to everyone's disappointment, I leave....
3
votes
2answers
803 views

Good statistical software system for teaching response surface design?

I am looking for a good software system to teach students on response surface designs with. Few things I can think of are SAS Proc RSReg or SAS ADX. Is there any other software?
31
votes
3answers
3k views

Is there a Project Euler-alike for machine learning?

I found Project Euler http://projecteuler.net/ to be incredibly useful in learning programming languages. Is there a similar site for Machine Learning? I did see http://www.kaggle.com/, but it is not ...
14
votes
3answers
3k views

What can one tell a school kid about statistics and machine learning?

Next week we have an intern from a local school in the house. The concept behind his short internship is to get an idea how the real world works and what certain jobs deal with, how the daily work ...
15
votes
3answers
496 views

What's a good approach to teaching R in a computer lab?

There have been several good questions and sets of answers on introductory books or approaches to learning R eg here and here. But I have a slightly different problem - the best way to run an hour ...
16
votes
2answers
4k views

Explaining two-tailed tests

I am looking for various ways of explaining to my students (in an elementary statistics course) what is a two tailed test, and how its P value is calculated. How do you explain to your students the ...
8
votes
4answers
977 views

Why aren't all tests scored via item analysis/response theory?

Is there a statistical reason why item analysis/response theory isn't more widely applied? For instance, if a teacher gives a 25 question multiple choice test and finds that 10 questions were answered ...
13
votes
4answers
13k views

Where to find raw data about clinical trials? [closed]

I wish to use raw data about clinical trials for the end year examination of my master students. These data could deal with any kind of molecule as long as the trials were complete (Phase 1 to 4). Do ...
12
votes
4answers
347 views

References for consulting statisticians to offer their clients

This question illustrates the difficulty of a person mastering statistics and probability on their own, in the face of weakly developed resources like Wikipedia. It occurred to me that consulting ...
6
votes
4answers
2k views

Chi square statistic and contingency coefficients

I need some advice on explaining $\chi^2$ as a contingency measure from a pedagogical perspective. I usually introduce the individual terms in the $\chi^2$ sum as scaled deviations from independence; ...
34
votes
7answers
2k views

Why is it bad to teach students that p-values are the probability that findings are due to chance?

Can someone please offer a nice succinct explanation why it is not a good idea to teach students that a p-value is the prob(their findings are due to [random] chance). My understanding is that a p-...
9
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7answers
9k views

Datasets for data visualization examples, teaching and research

I am searching for existing datasets that we can use to test several datavis techniques we are researching. I know several resources like those included in R (try ...
7
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4answers
1k views

What are good techniques and resources for teaching Bayes theorem?

My friend and I want to do a hands on tutorial on Bayes theorem for the Seattle LessWrong group. Neither of us have done this before, so we're searching for prior art; techniques that other people ...
15
votes
3answers
10k views

How to best display graphically type II (beta) error, power and sample size?

I'm asked to write an introduction to statistics and I'm struggling how to graphically show the way p-value and power relate. I've come up with this graph: My question: Is there a better way of ...
22
votes
2answers
630 views

Good online resource with tips on graphing association between two numeric variables under various conditions

Context: Over the while I've acquired a set of heuristics on how to effectively plot the association between two numeric variables. I imagine most people who work with data would have a similar set ...
2
votes
1answer
306 views

Listing of typical correlations across spectrum of topics and disciplines to assist with teaching meaning of correlation coefficient

Context When I teach students about the correlation coefficient, I like to give students a sense of how correlations map on to common associations that might be encountered in daily life and across ...
11
votes
1answer
230 views

What questions would a statistician ask about analysis of E. coli outbreak?

You may have heard about the recent enterohaemorrhagic E. coli (EHEC) outbreak in Germany. What questions would a statistician ask about EHEC analysis ? I'm thinking of Q+As between reporters / ...
14
votes
5answers
978 views

Software (or webapps) for teaching kids statistics or probability?

I would like (in the distant future) to teach statistics to kids. For that matter, I'd be happy to know of software (obviously I am tending towards FOSS), or webapps, that are helpful in explaining ...
18
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2answers
1k views

Learning statistical concepts through data analysis exercises

I find that simple data analysis exercises can often help to illustrate and clarify statistical concepts. What data analysis exercises do you use to teach statistical concepts?
15
votes
1answer
2k views

What are the pros and cons of learning about a distribution algorithmically (simulations) versus mathematically?

What are the pros and cons of learning about a distribution's properties algorithmically (via computer simulations) versus mathematically? It seems like computer simulations can be an alternative ...
10
votes
3answers
311 views

Children's statistical education in different countries?

I am interested to know what level of statistics kids are learning in different countries around the world. Could you please suggest data/links that shed light on what is happening in this regards? I'...
15
votes
8answers
810 views

How to NOT use statistics

This is sort of an open ended question but I wanna be clear. Given a sufficient population you might be able to learn something (this is the open part) but whatever you learn about your population, ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

What's the difference between “measurement method” and “measurement procedure”?

The ISO VIM defines them as: measurement method: generic description of a logical organization of operations used in a measurement. measurement procedure: detailed description of a ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

How to generate user-friendly summaries of cluster analysis?

I used BIRCH and HAC to do clustering on my data. I want to now what type of information I can include in reports that my users can generate to get more insights on the clusters. I would have to dumb ...
22
votes
2answers
1k views

Suggestions for improving a probability and statistics cheat sheet

Context: In an effort to structure the center pieces that I have came across in probability theory and statics, I created a reference document focussing on the mathematical essentials (available here)...
56
votes
8answers
6k views

Why continue to teach and use hypothesis testing (when confidence intervals are available)?

Why continue to teach and use hypothesis testing (with all its difficult concepts and which are among the most statistical sins) for problems where there is an interval estimator (confidence, ...
32
votes
12answers
11k views

What is the hardest statistical concept to grasp?

This is a similar question to the one here, but different enough I think to be worthwhile asking. I thought I'd put as a starter, what I think one of the hardest to grasp is. Mine is the ...
5
votes
2answers
746 views

Statistics and econometrics distance learning

I would be very glad if someone can point me out to statistics and econometrics distance learning courses like http://www2.statistics.com. Thanks in advance
43
votes
9answers
31k views

Tiny (real) datasets for giving examples in class?

When teaching an introductory level class, the teachers I know tend to invent some numbers and a story in order to exemplify the method they are teaching. What I would prefer is to tell a real story ...
60
votes
9answers
15k views

How to visualize what ANOVA does?

What way (ways?) is there to visually explain what is ANOVA? Any references, link(s) (R packages?) will be welcomed.
13
votes
2answers
3k views

Online resources for learning statistics, exercises (with solutions)?

I'm currently working as a teaching assistant at my university, in an introductory statistics course (for medical students). Offline, there are many books available with information to aid the ...
15
votes
1answer
2k views

Sequential hypothesis testing in basic science

I'm a pharmacologist and, in my experience, almost all papers in basic biomedical research use Student's t-test (either to support inference or to conform to expectations...). A couple of years ago it ...
136
votes
15answers
114k views

Intuitive explanation for dividing by $n-1$ when calculating standard deviation?

I was asked today in class why you divide the sum of square error by $n-1$ instead of with $n$, when calculating the standard deviation. I said I am not going to answer it in class (since I didn't ...
33
votes
10answers
6k views

How to teach students who fear statistics?

I am about to help teach statistics to medical students this semester. I've heard many horror stories about the fear of these students from learning statistics. Can anyone suggest what to do with ...
11
votes
6answers
7k views

What is your favorite problem for an introduction to probability?

I like introducing probability by discussing the Boy or Girl or Bertrand paradox. What other (short) problem/game provides a motivating introduction to probability? (One answer per response, please) ...
11
votes
4answers
2k views

Good text on Clinical Trials?

I'm an undergraduate statistics student looking for a good treatment of clinical trials analysis. The text should cover the fundamentals of experimental design, blocking, power analysis, latin squares ...
13
votes
6answers
2k views

Short online videos that could assist a lecture on statistics

When lecturing statistics, it can be useful to incorporate the occasional short video. My first thoughts included: Animations and visualisations of statistical concepts Stories regarding the ...
7
votes
4answers
829 views

Learning how to use a new statistical GUI?

The question is in the header, but I would extend the context a bit. Next semester I am due to be a teaching assistant (TA) in a course in statistics, where I would need to help sociology students ...