Four Interactive Arcade Games to Teach Statistics
Presented by: Jacopo Di Iorio (Penn State University)
This month, we highlight the JSDSE article, How to Get Away With Statistics: Gamification
of Multivariate Statistics. One of the authors will discuss their attempt to teach applied
statistics techniques typically taught in advanced courses, such as clustering and
principal component analysis, to a non-mathematically educated audience by using four
different interactive arcade games. The four games are all user-centric, score-based
arcade experiences intended to be played under the supervision of an instructor. They were
developed using the Shiny web-based application framework for R. In every activity
students have to follow the instructions and to interact with plots to minimize a score
with a statistical meaning. No knowledge, other than elementary geometry and Euclidean
distance, is required to complete the tasks. Results from a student questionnaire give the
authors some confidence that the experience benefits students. This fact suggests that
these or similar activities could greatly improve the diffusion of statistical thinking at
different levels of education.
Jacopo Di Iorio is a post-doctoral Eberly Fellow at the Department of Statistics of the
Pennsylvania State University (State College, USA). Previously a post-doctoral research
fellow at Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna (Pisa, Italy), in 2020 he got his Ph.D. in
Mathematical Models and Methods in Engineering from Politecnico di Milano (Milano, Italy).
His research interests lie primarily in the field of clustering and biclustering for
multivariate and functional data, applied Statistics, and Statistics and Data Science
The webinar will take place on Tuesday, March 22nd from 4:00-4:30pm EST.
Registration is required but is free:
We hope that you can join us for an informative discussion about innovative new ways to
visualize data with our students.
Leigh Johnson (Capital University)
Moderator, CAUSE/JSDSE Webinar Series