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Teaching Stat I: Putting it all together. Kirk Steinhorst and Carolyn Keeler University of Idaho. The Statistics Teaching Reform movement. The problem: Cobb JSE 1993 Progress: Keeler and Steinhorst JSE 1995 Current status: Garfield, Hogg, Schau, and Whittinghill JSE 2002.

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teaching stat i putting it all together

Teaching Stat I: Putting it all together

Kirk Steinhorst and Carolyn Keeler

University of Idaho

the statistics teaching reform movement
The Statistics Teaching Reform movement
  • The problem: Cobb JSE 1993
  • Progress: Keeler and Steinhorst JSE 1995
  • Current status: Garfield, Hogg, Schau, and Whittinghill JSE 2002
the essential ingredients
The Essential Ingredients
  • Statistical thinking vs. data analysis vs mechanics
  • Technology…statistical computing, web-based learning materials, WebCT
  • Activity-based learning and authentic assessment
course goals statistics and probability
Course goals-Statistics and Probability
  • Statistical literacy
  • Probability as needed in other courses
  • Statistical numeracy (ability to calculate things and draw graphs
  • Ability to apply statistics in professional life and in public life

Kirk Steinhorst and Carolyn Keeler

format
Format
  • Large lecture, stadium seating, computer projection and overheads
  • 30 minute mini-lecture, 20 minute in-class group activity
  • Instructor can call up web text and applets in class
  • WebCT used for out of class activities (2)
assessment activities homework and tests1
Assessment: Activities, homework and tests

Kirk Steinhorst and Carolyn Keeler

outcomes
Outcomes
  • Grade distribution
    • A 29
    • B 31
    • C 24
    • D 10
    • F 4 + 8*

Overall average 2.5

    • Early dropouts 20 (16% of 126)
s urvey of a ttitudes t owards statistics candace schau univ new mexico
Survey of Attitudes Towards Statistics (Candace Schau Univ New Mexico)
  • 28 Likert items reduce to 4 scales –
    • affect (+ - feelings) 6 items
    • cognitive competence (intellectual skills) 6 items
    • value of statistics 9 items
    • difficulty of statistics 7 items
  • 115 pre, 72 post, 64 complete change scores – a decrease of about 5 points in the first 3 scales and about 3 points on the difficulty scale
remember our plan
Remember our plan…

Use active learning in cooperative groups with web-based instructional materials and authentic assessment

Kirk Steinhorst and Carolyn Keeler

findings
Findings
  • The system works for the top half of the class
    • Those students who use the technology like it.
    • In-class active learning works.
    • In-class tests based on takehome tests leads to effective authentic assessment.
findings1
Findings
  • The poor or below average student has great difficulty with “statistical thinking” – technology doesn’t help.
    • WebCT based discussions were not successful.
    • The poor student could not use the web-based text effectively.
    • Poorer students need regular homework in addition to activities.
recommendations
Recommendations
  • Use a conventional textbook with on-line applets
  • Assign and collect homework regularly
  • Use Minitab or SYSTAT
  • Keep in-class activities and takehome/in-class testing
conclusions
Conclusions
  • Active learning in cooperative groups can work in large classes
  • Use web-based instructional materials carefully –too much technology overwhelms the poorer student
  • Activities and tests as described are good models for authentic assessment

Kirk Steinhorst and Carolyn Keeler

final comment on the plan
Final comment on the plan:

Use active learning in cooperative groups with web-based instructional materials and authentic assessment…

We went a step or two too far. Back off on web text and web discussion. The rest is good.

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