Statistical Inference & Techniques

  • A quote to be used in discussing how sufficient data should be able to trump an hypothesis. The quote is by English philosopher and pioneering feminist Mary Wollstonecraft (1759 – 1797) from her 1792 book "A Vindication of the Rights of Woman." .
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  • A song about the different assumptions needed for parametric statistical methods and the importance of checking how well they hold and what effect they may have on the results and conclusions. The lyrics were written in 2017 by Dennis K. Pearl from Penn State University and may be sung to the tune of "Every Breath You Take" written by Sting and made popular by The Police on their 1983 album "Synchronicity."
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  • Rseek.org is a search engine for R resources. Type any topic in the search box, and get resources that are R specific. You can further narrow your search to just articles, books, packages, support, or "for beginners."
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  • A game to aid in teaching experimental design and significance testing (especially one sample, two sample, and matched pair situations). Tangrams are puzzles in which a person is expected to place geometrically shaped pieces into a particular design. The on-line Tangram Game provides students the opportunity to design many versions of the original game in order to test which variables have the largest effect on game completion time. A full set of student and instructor materials are available and were created by Kevin Comiskey (West Point), Rod Sturdivant (Ohio State University) and Shonda Kuiper (Grinnell College) as part of the Stat2Labs collection.
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  • A game to aid in the active learning of significance testing including power and the limitations of p-values. Statistically Grounded is an on-line game that introduces multivariate issues in a simplified game environment. Students are asked to serve as a consultant for their friend, Joe. Joe is starting his own coffee company and students help him design a study to determine whether factors, such as location, time of day, price, type of music, or some combination of these influence sales. The on-line game allows students to design a study, sample data, and make suggestions on how Joe's business should be run. The game then simulates several months of business based on student's suggestions. The goal is to design a plan that will earn the most sales and make the largest amount of profits. The TigetSTAT labs handouts were created by Rod Sturdivant (Ohio State University) and John Jackson (West Point) as part of the Stat2Labs collection at Grinnell College
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  • A game for the active learning of concepts in experimental design and hypothesis testing in the one sample, two-sample and matched pairs situation. Memorathon is an on-line game in which a person is expected to repeat a sequence of buttons provided by an electronic device. Each time you successfully repeat the given sequence of buttons, the sequence gets longer. The challenge is to remember as long a sequence as possible. Cognitive psychologists test short-term memory using serial recall, which evaluates the ability of people to recall information in the specified order in which it was presented. Measuring how many items a subject can remember in order without an error, called memory span, is also studied. The Memorathon Game is an example of serial recall and memory span. This on-line game provides students the opportunity to design multiple versions of the Memorathon Game in order to test which variables have the largest effect on memory. You can leave all the variables blank when you are simply trying out the game, however, if you want to find your score in the database of results, input any specific course ID and student ID. Memorathon is part of the Stat2Labs collection at Grinnell College which includes instructor notes and student handouts.
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  • A game to help in the active learning of concepts in experimental design, regression, and significance testing. Shapesplosion is an on-line game in which a person is expected to place specifically shaped pegs into the appropriate holes within a short time period. In this project, students are asked to use the Shapesplosion game to design an experiment and collect data. This game is specifically designed so that students have the opportunity to develop and test their own unique research question. You can leave all the variables blank when you are simply trying out the game, however, if you want to find your score is the database of results, you will need to select the Participant Info box. This resource is particularly suitable for project oriented teaching and is part of the Stat2Labs collection at Grinnell College that includes instructor notes and student handouts created with funding from NSF-DUE grant #1043814 (Shonda Kuiper, PI).
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  • A joke for discussing how transformations can make data more normal and stabilize variances across groups with different means (here the square root transformation for Poisson data). The joke was written by Larry Lesser from The University of Texas at El Paso.
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  • A "haiku" poem written by Larry Lesser from The University of Texas at El Paso. The poem is a playful vehicle to help introduce the chi-square test for contingency tables.
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  • A cartoon to be used for discussing the normality assumption in statistical models. The cartoon was used in the September 2016 CAUSE Cartoon Caption Contest. The winning caption was submitted by Eugenie Jackson, a student at University of Wyoming while the drawing was created by John Landers using an idea from Dennis Pearl. A second winning caption was by Amy Nowacki from Cleveland Clinic/Case Western Reserve University whose entry “The dangers of driving more than 3 standard deviations below the speed limit,” would be useful in a classroom discussion of z-scores (see "Cartoon: Pile-UP II") Honorable mentions that rose to the top of the judging in the September caption contest included “Big pile-up at percentile marker -1.96 on the bell-curve. You might want to take the chi-square curve to avoid these negative values,” written by Mickey Dunlap from University of Tennessee at Martin; “Call the nonparametric team! This is not normal!” written by Semra Kilic-Bahi of Colby-Sawyer College; “I assumed the driving conditions today would be normal!” written by John Vogt of Newman University; and “CAUTION: Z- values seem smaller than they appear. Slow down & watch for stopped traffic reading these values,” written by Kevin Schirra, a student at University of Akron.
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