Tag Archives: Teaching resources

PMean: Bad examples of data analysis are bad examples to use in teaching

I’m on various email discussion groups and every once in a while someone sends out a request that sounds something like this.

I’m teaching a class (or running a journal club or giving a seminar) on research design (or evidence based medicine or statistics) and I’d like to find an example of a research study that use bad statistical analysis.

And there’s always a flood of responses back. But if I were less busy, I’d jump into the conversation and say “Stop! Don’t do it!” Here’s why. Continue reading

PMean: Can you recommend an introductory book on Bayesian Statistics

I got an email asking for a recommendation for an introductory book on Bayesian Statistics from someone who recently graduated from our program. It’s kind of a difficult request because the mathematical demands needed to understand Bayesian statistics are not trivial. Here’s what I recommended. Continue reading

PMean: Do we really need to teach all this math stuff?

I got tagged in a Facebook post about an article criticizing the emphasis on math in high school and that proposes replacing some of the more theory based courses like Algebra II and Calculus with “a practical course in statistics for citizenship”. It’s an interesting article, and although it had some points, I had to disagree with the overall premise. Here’s what I said. Continue reading

Recommended: Qualifications for Teaching an Introductory Statistics Course

The American Statistical Association and the Mathematical Association of America published a joint statement on the qualifications that a college teacher would need in order to teach an introductory statistics course for undergraduate students. This is an issue in many Mathematics Departments which might need to teach such a class but would not be big enough to have a degreed Statistician. A minimum amount of course work is needed, but also practical experience with data analysis, which might come from “advanced courses, projects, consulting, or research.” Continue reading

Quote: Because statistics has too often been presented …

Because statistics has too often been presented as a bag of specialized computational tools, with morbid emphasis on calculation, it is no wonder that survivors of such courses regard their statistical tools as instruments of torture [rather] than as diagnostic aids in the art and science of data analysis. — George W. Cobb, as cited at http://www.cmaj.ca/content/165/9/1226.long