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  • Meditation on Statistical Method is a poem by American poet and Brandeis University professor James Vincent Cunningham (1911 - 1985). The poem was originally published in "The Exclusions of a Rhyme: Poems and Epigrams" (1960; Swallow Press) and may also be found in "The collected poems and epigrams of J.V. Cunningham" (1971; Swallow Press).
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  • This group activity illustrates the concepts of size and power of a test through simulation. Students simulate binomial data by repeatedly rolling a ten-sided die, and they use their simulated data to estimate the size of a binomial test. They carry out further simulations to estimate the power of the test. After pooling their data with that of other groups, they construct a power curve. A theoretical power curve is also constructed, and the students discuss why there are differences between the expected and estimated curves. Key words: Power, size, hypothesis testing, binomial distribution
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  • This limerick was written by Columbia University professor of biostatistics, Joseph L. Fleiss (1938 -2003). It was published along with three other limericks by Dr. Fleiss in a letter to the editor of "The American Statistician" (volume 2; 1967, page 49). It was written while he worked as a biostatistician at the Department of Mental Hygiene of the State of New York just prior to receiving his Ph.D. and joining the faculty at Columbia.
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  • This activity allows students to explore the relationship between sample size and the variability of the sampling distribution of the mean. Students use a Java applet to specify the shape of the "parent" distribution and two sample sizes. The simulation then samples from the parent distribution to approximate the sampling distributions for the two sample sizes. Students can see both sampling distributions at the same time making them easy to compare. The activity also allows students to determine the probability of extreme sample means for the different sample sizes so that they can discover that small sample sizes are much more likely than large samples to produce extreme values. Keywords: sampling distribution, sample size, simulation
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  • This poem was written by Peter E. Sprangers while he was a graduate student in the Department of Statistics at The Ohio State University and published in "CMOOL: Central Moments Of Our Lives" (volume 1; 2006, issue 2). The poem took second place in the poetry category of the 2007 A-Mu-sing competition.
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  • This interactive lecture activity motivates the need for sampling. "Why sample, why not just take a census?" Under time pressure, students count the number of times the letter F appears in a paragraph. The activity demonstrates that a census, even when it is easy to take, may not give accurate information. Under the time pressure measurement errors are more frequently made in the census rather than in a small sample.
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  • This Haiku was written by Dr. Nyaradzo Mvududu of the Seattle Pacific University School of Education. The poem took first place in the 2007 A-Mu-sing competition.
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  • This activity illustrates the convergence of long run relative frequency to the true probability. The psychic ability of a student from the class is studied using an applet. The student is asked to repeatedly guess the outcome of a virtual coin toss. The instructor enters the student's guesses and the applet plots the percentage of correct answers versus the number of attempts. With the applet, many guesses can be entered very quickly. If the student is truly a psychic, the percentage correct will converge to a value above 0.5.
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  • This limerick was written by Dr. Nyaradzo Mvududu of the Seattle Pacific University School of Education. The poem was given an honorable mention in the 2007 A-Mu-sing competition.
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  • The purpose of this activity is to enhance students' understanding of various descriptive measures. In particular, by completing this hands-on activity students will experience a visual interpretation of a mean, median, outlier, and the concept of distance-to-mean.
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