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Teaching Statistics: Resources for Undergraduate Instructors

Teaching Statistics: Resources for Undergraduate Instructors

Thomas L. Moore, Editor

Catalog Code: NTE-52
Print ISBN: 978-0-88385-162-3
250 pp., Paperbound, 2000
List Price: $44.95
MAA Member: $35.95
Series: MAA Notes

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The title of the lead article in this volume, Teaching Statistics: More Data, Less Lecturing, summarizes succinctly the basic tenets of statistics educational reform of the past 10 to 15 years, tenets around which the statistics profession has formed a surprisingly strong and supportive consensus. This volume strives to be an instructors’ manual for this reform movement and will be essential reading for anyone at the undergraduate or secondary level who teaches statistics, especially for those new to the teaching of statistics.

Behind this reform is the notion that statistics instruction should resemble statistical practice. Data lies at the heart of statistical practice and should thus form the center of instruction. Since most statistical practice involves issues of the collection, analysis, and interpretation of data, students should learn about and experience all three of these aspects continually in their learning.

Teaching Statistics: Resources for Undergraduate Instructors presents a collection of class and original articles on various aspects of statistical education along with descriptions of innovation and successful projects. The volume provides complete descriptions of projects along with companion pieces written by teachers who have used the projects and can provide practical advice to readers on how to use projects effectively. Other sections include motivation for and advice on how to use real data in teaching, how to choose a textbook at the introductory or mathematical statistics level, how to make effective use of technology, and how to better assess students by going beyond the reliance on in-class examinations.

Table of Contents


Section 1: Hortatory Imperatives
Teaching Statistics: More Data, Less Lecturing, by George Cobb
Bibliography of Resources for Teaching Statistics

Section 2: Teaching with Data
Real Data in Classroom Examples, by Karla Ballman
Small Students Projects in an Introductory Statistics Course, by Robert L. Wardrop
Motivating, Monitoring, and Evaluating Students Projects, by Katherine T. Halvorsen and Thomas L. Moore
Bibliography on Student Projects
Curriculum in Context: Teaching with Case Studies in Statistics Courses, by Norean Radke Sharpe

Section 3: Established Projects in Active Learning
Excerpts from Workshop Statistics: Discovery with Data
A Companion Piece to Workshop Statistics, by Michael D. Seyfried
Excerpts from Activity-Based Statistics
A Companion Piece to Activity-Based Statistics, by Bruce King
Excerpts from Elementary Statistics Laboratory Manual
A Companion Piece for the Elementary Statistics Laboratory Manual, by Sneh Gulati

Section 4: Textbooks
Advice to Mathematics Teachers on Evaluating Introductory Statistics Textbooks, by Robert W. Hayden
Assessing Mathematical Statistics Textbooks, by Katherine T. Halvorsen

Section 5: Technology
Evaluating Statistical Analysis Packages for Introductory Statistics Teaching, by Robin H. Lock, Thomas L. Moore, and Rosemary A. Roberts
Using Graphing Calculators for Data Analysis in Teaching, by Patrick W. Hopfensperger
Bibliography of Calculator Resources for Statistics
Excerpts for An Electronic Companion to Statistics
Excerpts from Visual Statistics
Excerpts from StatConcepts
Companion Piece on Using An Electronic Companion to Statistics, Visual Statistics, and StatConcepts to Teach Introductory Statistics, by Roxy Peck
Introduction to ActivStats® by Paul Velleman
Companion Piece for ActivStats®, by Amy Fisher
A Time-Subject Index for Against All odds: Inside Statistics, by Edward R. Mansfield
WWW Resources for Teaching Statistics, by Robin H. Lock

Section 6: Assessment
Beyond Testing and Grading: New Ways to Use Assessment to Improve Student Learning, by Joan B. Garfield
Experiences with Authentic Assessment Techniques in an Introductory Statistics Course, by Beth L. Chance
Bibliography on Assessment
Author Contact Information

About the Editor

Thomas L. Moore has taught statistics and mathematics at Grinnell College since 1980. He is a 1969 graduate of Carleton College, earned a Ph.D. in mathematics from Dartmouth College in 1976, and earned an MA in statistics from the University of Iowa in 1981. His main area of scholarship is statistics education. He is a past chair of the Section on Statistical Education of the American Statistical Association and is co-founder of the Statistics in the Liberal Arts Workshop (SLAW). He has been an associate editor of Mathematical Magazine, The American Statistician, and the Journal of Statistics Education. He spent 1985/86 on leave as an applied statistician with the Eastman Kodak Company in Rochester, NY, and spent 1997/98 as a visiting instructor at Mount Holyoke College. He shares a faculty position in mathematics at Grinnell with his wife, Emily H. Moore, who is a combinatorialist.

MAA Review

Reviewed by Richard L. Scheaffer

Government, employment, health, housing, food, entertainment, almost all areas of modern society are dominated by vast amounts of quantitative information made possible by the technological revolution. In order to function intelligently in this society, educated persons must have some understanding of data and chance since those concepts underlie the language in which many important issues are best described. Consequently, it is not surprising that introductory statistics courses have one of the highest rates of increasing enrollment among courses in the mathematical sciences. In fact, the increase in enrollment is outstripping the increase in instructors with degrees in statistics. In addition, the practice of statistics is moving at a rapid pace into methodologies built around intensive data exploration rather than mathematical theory, necessitating an upgrading of skills even for many instructors with degrees in statistics. This new book, Teaching Statistics, is, then, a timely and welcome addition to the resource bank of any teacher of introductory statistics, including those teaching at the high school level. Continued...


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