The CAUSE Cartoon Caption Contest for May is now taking entries
The Consortium for the Advancement of Undergraduate Statistics Education is happy to
announce our 24th Cartoon Caption Contest (that’s right – fully two years now). Each month
a cartoon, drawn by British cartoonist John Landers, will be posted for you and your
students to suggest statistical captions. Note that the cartoons are posted at the
beginning of the month month and submissions are due at the end of the month regardless of
when the winners are announced. Student entries are always welcome - this can be a fun
exercise to assign to your class.
The next cartoon and the entry rules for the contest ending May 31st are at
The best captions will be posted on CAUSEweb and the winner(s) will receive their choice
of a coffee mug or t-shirt imprinted with the cartoon.
April Results: The April caption contest had 47 entries and featured a cartoon showing two
men out in the rain. One man is standing under an umbrella that looks like a normal curve
while the other guy is being poked in the eye by the “tail” end of the umbrella. There
were two co-winners for the April contest. The first was "Open your eyes to catch the
significant events occurring at the tails," written by Debmalya Nandy, a student at
Penn State University (60% of this month’s entries were from students). Debmalya’s caption
can be readily used in discussing the effect of outliers – especially on significance
testing. The second winner was “Actuaries write umbrella policies to cover freak
accidents,” by Larry Lesser from The University of Texas at El Paso. Larry’s caption makes
the cartoon useful in applied probability courses to discuss the nature of actuarial work
and the importance of accounting for rare events.
One honorable mention this month goes to “If you don't meet the Normality assumption,
you're left out in the rain!” written by Chantal Larose from Eastern Connecticut State
University. A rare double honorable mention goes to Jim Alloway from EMSQ Associates for
two great captions "Being in the middle of the normal curve is comfortable; it’s the
tails that you have to watch out for," and for "Ignoring the tails will get you
Thanks to everyone who submitted a caption and remember to let your students know about
the CAUSE caption contest!