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Observational Studies

  • A cartoon that might be used in discussing excessive interim analyses. The cartoon is #24 in the "Life in Research" series at www.vadio.com. Free to use with attribution in the classroom or on course websites.
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  • A study in the Washington Post says that women have better verbal skills than men. I just want to say to the authors of that study: 'Duh.' This a quote from American comedian and talk show host Conan O'Brien (1963 - ) delivered on his TV show "Late Night with Conan O'Brien".
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  • It is a common error to infer that things which are consecutive in the order of time have necessarily the relation of cause and effect. is a quote by American botanist and medical educator Jacob Bigelow (1787 - 1879). The quote appears on page 41 of his 1859 book "Nature in Disease: illustrated in various discourses and essays".
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  • I remember my friend Johnny von Neumann used to say, with four parameters I can fit an elephant, and with five I can make him wiggle his trunk. includes the quote attributed to Hungarian-American mathematician John von Neumann (1903 - 1957). The full quote was relayed by Enrico Fermi in 1953 when he was asked about the value of a result that used four free parameters in fitting experimental results. (see "A meeting with Enrico Fermi" "Nature" 427: p. 297.)
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  • A cartoon to teach about interpreting observational studies. Cartoon by John Landers (www.landers.co.uk) based on an idea from Dennis Pearl (The Ohio State University). Free to use in the classroom and on course web sites.
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  • A cartoon to use with discussion of notation for parameter values. Cartoon by John Landers (www.landers.co.uk) based on an idea from Dennis Pearl (The Ohio State University). Free to use in the classroom and on course web sites.
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  • This lesson introduces two sample hypothesis testing for means and discusses the one-tailed and two-tailed t-tests.
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  • This tutorial opens with a survey on polling. Upon completing the survey, students are taken through an election example which uses polling to explain random sampling, bias, margin of error, and confidence intervals.
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  • This site contains links to journals on probability and statistics published around the world. "Some publishers require registration to browse abstracts. Others require a current subscription to the journal by you or your institution. Most browsable titles, abstracts and papers are only for the past year or so."
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  • The plural of anecdote is not data. Attributed to American economist Roger E. Brinner in the on-line list of quotes at www.keypress.com/fathom/fathom1/quotes.html
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