ASA DataFest: Weekend-long data analysis hackathon sweeping the globe


Presented by:

Mine Cetinkaya-Rundel, Duke University

Abstract

Engaging with data has always been at the heart of statistical thinking. However rapidly evolving technologies producing readily-available complex and large data necessitate that students learn much more complex statistical thinking than in the recent past to be able to meaningfully engage with these data. In this virtual poster we will introduce and share experiences from ASA DataFest, an annual, weekend-long data analysis hackathon, as a means for supplementing classroom approaches to teaching statistical thinking. At DataFest teams of students work over a weekend to reveal insights into a rich, complex, and surprise data set. Over the last five years, DataFest has grown from a single institution event to an ASA sponsored event held at 16 locations with students from 30 participating universities from three countries. The poster will discuss the inspiration behind founding this event and its growth and impact. Additionally, we will give insights into various facets of planning the event, discuss pedagogical as well as practical considerations around finding the right dataset for the event, and share student and faculty feedback with footage from the event.

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Teaching Data Science
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