**Teaching
Statistics, eh?
**

**Constructed and maintained by Augustin
Vukov. Please email me with any feedback you may have.
**

General lecture tips

Notes on Lecturing The Lecture Method 10 teaching tips The Large Lecture Course Delivering a Lecture

Activated lectures

Techniques of Active Learning Beating the Numbers Game Quickies during lecture Throwing a change-up at lecture An active learning case studySpecial topics

Encouraging civil behaviour in large classes

Broad resources

McGill Online Teaching and Learning Resources are nicely organized, alphabetically by topic

**Historical tales & tidbits worth telling in
class**

Gossett at Guinness – brewing beer and t-tests. I like to tell this tale as in text by DeVeaux et al, below, accompanied by my own somewhat speedier computer simulated samples, with tally of results showing a long tailed distribution.

Sir Ronald Fisher biographical notes

Or check biographies at Statisticians in history and MacTutor History of Mathematics archive

**Statistical Humour**

Galley
of Statistics Jokes Profession
Jokes Science
Jokes The
Canonical List of Math Jokes

Personally, how these people can make fun of the such powerful techniques like the analysis of variance method used in one-way anova, two-way anova, multi-way anova, and latin boss-anova completely eludes me!

Spice up your lectures
with some **Video Case
Studies**

Against All Odds: Inside Statistics - The popular Annenberg video series, containing actual case studies in documentary format, interspersed with traditional statistics lectures. You can spice up lectures by inserting some of these case studies. Check out my recommendations

Computer software

(** F **= free;

Minitab
statistical
software – my choice – powerful and easy to learn.
Version 14, just out, has some nice improvements.
*B*

SPSS
has many purchase/lease/size options available.
*B
*

JMP
statistical software is an SAS product, for Macintosh, Windows, and
Linux. An intro user’s
guide is at the Chance
website. *B*

The R Project
for
Statistical Computing - R is a
language and
environment for statistical computing and graphics (similar to S). Not menu-driven. *F*

StatCrunch
(formerly known as WebStat) –
web-based software, bearing some resemblance to Minitab, that does
quite a lot
(alas, only one-way ANOVA and no multiple comparisons)
*F*

**Textbooks – recommendations/reviews**

Introduction
to the
Practice of Statistics by Moore & McCabe – The book that set
the
contemporary standard for teaching introductory statistics, with its
strong
emphasis on practical data-oriented thinking and concepts.
Pushes the limits at times, e.g. adding a new
supplementary chapter (on CD) on bootstrapping in 5^{th} ed. Strong exercise sections with varied,
thoughtful questions. The Electronic
Encyclopedia of Statistical Examples & Exercises and other useful
resources
(quizzes, applets, supplemental solved exercises) may be found at the
publisher’s web site or on the text CD-ROM. On the negative side, some
say it is too verbose, and directed toward a few elite
schools.
Multi-factor ANOVA and multiple regression are only lightly touched on. An abbreviated version of the text is also
available.

Stats
– Data and Models by Deveaux, Velleman, Bock – This book has much
of the
practical, data-oriented flair of the Moore/McCabe book, but with some
additional pedagogical features and *humour*.
Several different versions of the text are
available.

**Multi-media interactive courseware**

Active Stats is a multimedia approach (video, simulation, animation, stats package) to learning Statistics, which includes the content found in a typical introductory statistics course. Also available in Excel, JMP, Minitab and SPSS versions.

CyberStats is a complete online stats course, including text, interactive applets, testing facilities, computing software, course management system, created by some talented people (Jessica Utts et al). Suitable for on-campus, distance-learning or self-paced.

**Classics & Interesting books:**

The Visual Display of Quantitative Information by Edward Tufte – the classic on principles of graphic design, with great examples of the good, the bad, and the ugly

Statistics – A Guide to the Unknown edited by Judith Tanur et al – collection of essays describing important applications of statistics and probability in many fields

The Cartoon Guide to Statistics by Gonick & Smith – presents the basic concepts, very accurately, but in a unique and pleasant format

**Sample multiple-choice questions**

SticiGui sample test questions

STA220
Final Exam 2001 has 30 questions from the 2001 final exam in an
introductory Statistics service course at

**Educational applets**

Descriptives:

Interactive
histogram - See the histogram change as you vary the class width (

Histogram explorer - See statistics change as you vary the shape of the histogram

Regression:

Regression by eye - Guess the correlation and regression line, then compare with true.

Putting Points - Click to add points, see the regression line, correlation, and residual plots change

Least-squares - Vary the line or the points, to change the sum of squared residuals, visualized as squared boxes

Sampling distributions:

Sampling distributions – choose or draw a population, choose a statistic, choose a sample size, see samples one at a time, or 1000’s at a time – Wow!

The quincunx – a visual expression of the Central Limit Theorem

Probability simulations:

Let’s Make a Deal - switch doors or stay put?

The Birthday Problem – how often will we find matching birthdays in a group? Or here.

The Cliff-Hanger – random walks can be dangerous

Collecting animal cards – how many WebFlake boxes to collect all the prizes?

Rolling dice - choose the number of dice, then roll ‘em

Inference:

Confidence Interval Applet - Simulate and count how many Confidence Intervals cover the mean

ANOVA applet has one-way and two-way interactive ANOVA visualizations

A variety of applets/applet links may be found at

The Rice Virtual Lab – lots of good applets here, good discussions too

Java
Applets at ISDS at

Statistical demonstration applets - links to various sites with applets, well organized and categorized by topic

**Data Sets on the web**, that may be useful
for
examples, test questions, etc

The Data and Story Library (DASL) is an online library of data files and

stories that illustrate the use of basic statistics methods. Includes a search engine.

StatLib-Datasets Archive – over 100 data sets from various sources (data and descriptions)

CHANCE Data Sets - small collection of data sets, from recent events

JSE Data Archive has data sets with accompanying articles discussing possible uses

Data Sets from the Exploring Data website, with analysis suggestions

Statistical Data Sets from UmassAmherst, organized nicely by statistical topic

Other sources of data (government, official agencies. …)

Statistics Canada
–
check out their *Canadian Statistics* and *Products and
Services*

The Data Web is a collaboration between the U.S. Census Bureau and Centers for Disease Control including a special browser for searching and accessing datasets from a variety of surveys

WHO Statistical Information System

U.S. Dept of Agriculture Economics and Statistics System has several hundred searchable reports and datasets

FedStats is
a gateway
to statistics from over 100

Bureau
of
Justice Statistics and FBI
pages have

U.S. Energy Information Administration has comprehensive and historical data on energy production, consumption, prices, and trade (select Featured Publications or Historical Data)

National Center for Education Statistics provides a compilation of statistical information re American education

The Baseball Archive has tons of baseball statistics, including salary data

**Statistics in the News**

CHANCE News abstracts current events in the news that use concepts from probability or statistics, with discussion questions, links to the article and other related resources.

Also try the newspapers, like

U of T Bulletin research news e.g. Trials under fire and Multiple therapies

Toronto’s Globe and Mail Science & Health

New York Times Science & Health links

**Journals**

CHANCE Magazine – jointly published by the American Statistical Association and Springer-Verlag, showcases the use of statistical methods and ideas in the social, biological, physical and medical sciences, and is accessible to a broad audience. Useful for case studies, student reports/projects, etc. Some articles are available online.

Journal of Statistics Education, an online journal, has some interesting papers with ideas and approaches that may be of interest to post-secondary educators

**Newsgroups/Blogs**

Andrew Gelman’s Statistics Blog

**Online texts**

The Little Handbook of Statistical Practice

SticiGui - Statistics text and tools for internet and classroom instruction with a graphical user interface (including sample tests)

Engineering Statistics Textbook - engineering oriented, but good stats coverage

**Web sites with general resources**

The Chance web site contains all sorts of useful resources

Rice Virtual Lab in Statistics

Exploring Data - secondary school oriented, but with some varied and useful resources, including good data sets

Classroom
demonstrations/activities/investigations

Birthday matches: are there any matches in your class?

Drawing random samples and examining sampling distributions – using your students

P-values illustrated for Wilcoxon test using playing cards

Coin spinning: Is the probability of head equal to 0.5?

Sampling distributions and estimation error using jelly beans/marbles/beads/etc

Quincunx - bring one
to
class, let
students drop the beads, examine results

**Miscellaneous links**

Gallery
of
Data Visualization - The Best and the Worst of Statistical Graphics (including material from Tufte’s book,
mentioned above)

Simpson's Paradox
explored

Jeff's Applets - Games
and Markov Chains

International
Conference on Teaching Statistics - ICOTS 7, July 2006, Brazil

** **