Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Stats - not awful or boring!

I received an email this morning from Jessica Hartnett *(Gannon University) about a blog she started called "Not Awful and Boring." Nice looking blog, and I loved several of the recent posts (the stats paraphernalia on Etsy is really cute :)

I don't meet many psych teachers who say that the stats section of the book is their favorite one to teach (sometimes the reaction is closer to "running in terror") and I think that's a shame. Stats is an opportunity for us to show students real, practical, and important applications of the math they've been learning for years, and understanding some basic statistics is increasingly important - if we don't know what "statistically significant" means, it's darn hard to really understand what most psychological studies mean! If we want our students to leave our classes able to interpret claims they see in media, then we need to take stats instruction seriously, right?

I've been using a dice-rolling demonstration lately to help students understand frequency distributions and statistical significance, and it seems to work well (if any of you use it, please tell me how it goes?) TOPSS published a Stats Unit Plan a while back, and it's good stuff.

Thanks for the resource, Jessica!

image credit:

posted by Rob McEntarfer


Rob McEntarffer said...

Update! Another stats resource:

mvita said...

Not sure why I just saw this post - months LATER! But maybe because I was not concerned with stats in February? I'm sure glad I found it now! This woman's blog is great:
As I am writing this, her latest post was on a website where students could use their FACEBOOK accounts to see how they might score on the BIG 5! What an interesting way for students to see if there is a correlation between their actual BIG 5 results and their FACEBOOK likes! Is this an example of concurrent validity? Or maybe convergent? YIKES!