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Using Statistics Effectively in Statistics Education Research. Sterling C. Hilton Brigham Young University. OUTLINE. Background on SMER workshops Summary of SMER final report Connections to statistics education research Discussion. BACKGROUND .

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Using statistics effectively in statistics education research l.jpg

Using Statistics Effectively in Statistics Education Research

Sterling C. Hilton

Brigham Young University


Outline l.jpg
OUTLINE Research

  • Background on SMER workshops

  • Summary of SMER final report

  • Connections to statistics education research

  • Discussion


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BACKGROUND Research

  • Richard Scheaffer was PI on ASA sponsored study supported by NSF grant

  • Three workshops

    • Jan. 2005

    • Sept. 2005

    • March 2006

  • 11 statisticians and 9 math education researchers


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PURPOSE/MOTIVATION Research

  • No Child Left Behind Act

    • “scientifically based research”

    • “…involves the application of rigorous, systematic, and objective procedures to obtain reliable and valid knowledge…”

  • Call to improve mathematics education in K-12 grades (e.g. TIMMS 3)

  • Widespread use of qualitative research methods in mathematics education research


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REPORT SUMMARY Research

  • Reporting guidelines for research program not research study

  • Goal to help build a useful and informative body of cumulative research

  • Help establish consistency in

    • Interventions

    • Measurement tools

    • Data collection

    • Data analysis

    • Reporting


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REPORT SUMMARY Research

  • Influential documents

    • Scientific Research in Education (NRC, 2002)

    • Advancing Scientific Research in Education (NRC, 2005)

    • Mathematical Proficiency for All Students (RAND, 2003)

  • Influential perspective

    • Medical research model (clinical trials)


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REPORT SUMMARY Research

  • Research program components (with characteristic activities and reporting guidelines)

    • Generate

    • Frame

      • Goals and Constructs

      • Measurement

      • Logistics and Feasibility

    • Examine

    • Generalize

    • Extend


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REPORT SUMMARY Research

  • Generate ideas

    • Develop a conceptual framework

    • Consider own values, beliefs, biases

  • Characteristic activities

    • Identify interesting issues/questions

    • Search research literature

    • Build case for importance of issue

  • No reporting guidelines given


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REPORT SUMMARY Research

  • Framing: Goals and Constructs

  • Characteristic activities

    • Formulate central ideas and underlying constructs

    • Formulate a research question

    • Identify relevant measures or need for new measures

    • Select and define research methods

  • Reporting guidelines

    • Define variables and measures used

    • State conjectures rather than causal statements

    • Exploratory and descriptive statistics


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REPORT SUMMARY Research

  • Framing: Measurement

    • Validity, reliability, fairness

  • Characteristic activities

    • Examine previously used measures

    • Develop new measures

    • Test new measures

  • Reporting guidelines

    • Describe key details of development process

    • State validity, reliability and bias of measures


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REPORT SUMMARY Research

  • Framing: Logistics and Feasibility

  • Characteristic activities

    • Formulate study design

    • Develop data collection protocols

    • Conduct pilot study

  • Reporting guidelines

    • Describe study design

    • Describe variables of interest

    • Describe the pilot tests of instruments / interventions


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REPORT SUMMARY Research

  • Examine

    • If warranted, expansion of the pilot study to a larger community (single institution)

    • Main goal is to establish efficacy

  • Characteristic activities

    • Explore and define setting

    • Refine measures and protocols

    • Identify extraneous sources of variability

  • Reporting guidelines

    • Provide enough information to allow replication

    • Give estimates of parameters

    • Report formal statistical inference


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REPORT SUMMARY Research

  • Generalize

    • If warranted, expansion of the study to larger community (multiple institutions)

    • Generally requires interdisciplinary work

    • Main goal is to generalize findings to larger population

  • Characteristic activities

    • Assess portability of measures and protocols

    • Design a multi-institutional study

    • Conduct rigorous statistical analysis

  • Reporting guidelines

    • Describe implementation

    • Describe efforts to minimize bias

    • Specify a statistical model


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REPORT SUMMARY Research

  • Extend

    • If warranted, extend the study over time and to multiple communities

    • Generally requires interdisciplinary work

    • Main goal is to understand long-term effects

  • Characteristic activities

    • Design and conduct longitudinal study

    • Document the need for program improvements

  • Reporting guidelines

    • Describe implementation of longitudinal study

    • Describe dropout rate and its handling in the analysis


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REPORT SUMMARY Research

  • Additional issues of interest

    • Stable unit treatment value assumption: the treatment is not dependent on the person administering it

    • The use of pre-post scores or gain scores is potentially problematic

    • Measurement development takes time and effort


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REPORT SUMMARY Research

  • Connection to medical clinical trial model

    Generate Pre-clinical

    Frame Pre-clinical, Phase I

    Examine Phase I, Phase II

    Generalize Phase III

    Extend Phase IV


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CONNECTIONS Research

  • Different research methods answer distinct research questions

  • Statistics education research is young

    (primarily in pre-clinical, phase I stages)

  • Researchers in statistics education need to:

    • talk the language of statisticians

    • allow the discipline to develop

    • not overstate their findings

    • have patience

    • persevere in doing quality research


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