This resource is used to help teach a Chance course, which is a statistics course designed to make students more informed, critical readers of current news stories that use probability and statistics. This portion of the Chance site, Teaching Aids, includes topics such as Using Lotteries in Teaching Chance; Clinical Trials, Experiments, and Observational Studies; Scoring Streaks and Records in Sports; Coincidence; Census data. Additionally, video and audio lectures (over 50) on various statistical topics are provided, including lectures on Benfords Law, Probability by Surprise, How to Display Data Badly, Statistics in Sports, NPR stories and interviews and some Car Talk problems. Data sets included on this site include the 1996 election demographics, 1994 baseball salaries, stock prices, quarterback rating data and distribution of birthdays. A Wiki is provided that gives updated news articles and current statistical happenings. Finally, there is an annotated bibliography of articles and books on statistics and statistics education.
The Chance Wiki is now housed on CAUSEweb (link provided), and educators can submit their own articles and activities to that site.
Type of Material:
Could be used by instructors to enhance their statistics courses (for example,in class lectures, classroom discussions, group projects).
Any browser should work for the articles and classroom resources.
For the video/audio: IE not recommended for PCs, Firefox not recommended for Macs, RealPlayer plug-in required.
Identify Major Learning Goals:
This site provides current media uses of statistics and thought-provoking activities related to these articles so that students can apply their knowledge of statistics to real-world situations. The intent of the Chance course is to help students learn how to think about statistics and probability, how to seek out for themselves the tools appropriate for studying a particular problem, and how to read and critically evaluate quantitative information presented in the media.
Target Student Population:
Most are appropriate to introductory statistics or probability classes. Depending on how deep the discussion is related to some of the articles, more advanced classes would also benefit.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills:
Depends on the articles. Basic relevant statistical concepts could be taught as the articles are introduced.
A wealth of information on statistics and statistics education that can be used by the veteran or novice statistics teachers to help students develop quantitative literacy. This is an excellent collection of resources. Helpful for instructors wanting to enhance their traditional courses or interested in teaching an entire Chance course. This material uses many of the GAISE guidelines for modern statistics education.
Could be better organized to help novice statistics teachers know where to begin to use the materials in their classes. This is more of a site for instructors than for students.
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool
Using resources such as these will encourage students to see real-world uses of statistics and to think critically about how they are used. Instructors can see models of other courses and applications of these resources and view presentations by experts in the field. Submerging the students with statistics that occur in everyday life, students should emerge statistically literatedeveloping a way to think, and interpret data, graphs and question statistical conclusions of others,
It may be difficult for a teacher to effectively integrate the material into a tightly woven course, and the website is probably more directly useful to instructors than to introductory-level students.
Ease of Use for Both Students and Faculty
This module is designed to be a resource for instructors to update their statistics and probability lectures and activities with current event topics. Since examples of assignments and whole courses are provided, it is very simple for instructors to implement these ideas in their own classrooms. The site provides easy-to-follow links and is searchable.
For the novice the amount of material may be overwhelming. A beginners guide would be useful. Also, it's a little confusing that the Wiki site has the more recent materials and this website has more dated material. Both are good resources though. It would be nice if the videos were in a more standard format. The website looks a little dated. The Wiki is much more modern.
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