We’ve all received one of those infinitely forwarded emails that makes the rounds throughout the year. This one had a fascinating piece about how the human mind processes reading material. The following paragraph of prose was given in large print and the recipient was asked to read and attempt to understand the material even though the letters in each word were out of order and the words were atrociously garbled misspellings:
“Cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg. The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid, aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy. It dn'seot mttaer in waht oredr the ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoatnt tihng is taht the frist and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it wouthit a porbelm.”
Most people here could read this with understanding and quicker than me I might add. Now try to read a statistical bit of literature:
Miittluvraae asilyans sattes an idtenossiy ctuoonr epilsle is the itternoiecsno of a panle pleralal to the xl-yapne and the sruacfe of a btiiarave nmarol dbttiisruein.”
In general the outcome changes dramatically - most people end up throwing in the towel! Remember the same rules were followed but with a not so glorious ending! HOW COULD THIS HAPPEN? HAS STATISTICS RUINED A REASONABLE PREMISE? *
Don't blame statistics. The words are just not as familiar and the concepts are more difficult to understand. The statistics statement reads: Multivariate analysis states an isodensity contour ellipse is the intersection of a plane parallel to the xy-plane and the surface of a bivariate normal distribution – almost impossible to visualize, UNLESS you actually have taken a course in multivariate analysis!
Michael Shermer: Baloney Detection Kit Based on the book The Demon Haunted World by Carl SaganThe Demon Haunted World http://www.youtube.com/ watch?v=eUB4j0n2UDU
With a sea of information coming at us from all directions, how do we sift out the misinformation and bogus claims, and get to the truth? Michael Shermer of Skeptic Magazine lays out a "Baloney Detection Kit," ten questions we should ask when encountering a claim.
The 10 Questions: 1. How reliable is the source of the claim? 2.Does the source make similar claims? 3. Have the claims been verified by somebody else? 4. Does this fit with the way the world works? 5. Has anyone tried to disprove the claim? 6. Where does the preponderance of evidence point? 7. Is the claimant playing by the rules of science? 8. Is the claimant providing positive evidence? 9. Does the new theory account for as many phenomena as the old theory? 10. Are personal beliefs driving the claim?
RESPONSE FROM LEVEL 2 TEACHERS AFTER FIRST MEETING
MY APPROACH FOR STUDENTS We read a report EVERY day, starting with the little ones available in the texts, and building up to the massive reports available on TKI. Students were encouraged to write their own nonsensical reports, as long as they included some statistical information!
My approach was to give my students the critical questions, generic task, schedule and report template at the start of the first week, and to produce a report on EVERY article we read in the 3 weeks we had.
2.11 GENERIC TASK AND SCHEDULE.docx 2 11 GENERIC TICK SHEET.docx2.11 CRITICAL QUESTIONS TO ASK WHEN READING A REPORT.docx..\2012 LESSON PLANS\12MAA\AS 91266\2.11 REPORTING TEMPLATE.docx H:\Documents\AMA\HOW TO PASS AS 91266.pptx
They submitted their practice reports electronically and I marked them online, e- mailing back their reports with the correct A M E statements highlighted...\..\2012 LESSON PLANS\12MAA\AS 91266\91266 STUDENT REPORTS\2.11 TICK SHEET TOBI.docx
We used the theory booklet compiled by Marion Steele and EGGS : both were uploaded onto our school intranet – both teacher and student versions!..\2012 LESSON PLANS\12MAA\AS 91266\BOOKLET
CONSTANT FEEDBACK WAS THE KEY!..\2012 LESSON PLANS\12MAA\AS 91266\91266 STUDENT REPORTS\AS 91266 PRACTICE TASK GRADES 1.docx..\2012 LESSON PLANS\12MAA\AS 91266\91266 STUDENT REPORTS\AS 91266 PRACTICE TASK GRADES 1.docx
OTHER ROSNET UPLOADS links to tki sample tasks links to nz glossary of statistical information generic tasks generic schedule generic tick sheet generic report template colour-coded exemplars..\2012 LESSON PLANS\12MAA\AS 91266\2.11 IAS PRACTICE TASK EXEMPLAR.docx..\2012 LESSON PLANS\12MAA\AS 91266\2.11 IAS PRACTICE TASK EXEMPLAR.docx
At the start of each lesson I also discussed with them features of the report, using notes taken from various texts – SAMPLE SIZE, SAMPLING ERRORS, ETC.
We taught the topic over a 3 week period, and students sat the assessment over 4 periods in the 4th week.
The full 40-page report was put up on our intranet for students to access independently, and a hard copy of the task and the executive summary was issued to all students at the start of Week 4 of the topic.
DISPLAY OF CONDITIONS OF AUTHENTICITY Breaches of Conduct for 91266 (2).pptx Breaches of Conduct for 91266 (2).pptx
They sat the assessment under exam conditions, but were allowed (as per the standard/task) to bring in any relevant research material - many students chose to print the ENTIRE report and bring that in as well!
WERE OUR RESULTS ANY GOOD? 18% E 27% M 33% A 22% NA but – those with NA mostly did not get l2 literacy either!!!!! also – task has yet to be moderated!!!!!
RESPONSE FROMLEVEL 2 TEACHERS AFTER ASSESSMENT WAS COMPLETED
“Statistics is the New Grammar” “ “ In the latest issue of WIRED, Clive Thompson pens a great piece which states that in a data-driven world it is critical that all citizens have at least a basic literacy in statistics.Clive Thompson pens a great piece
Now and in the future, we will have unprecedented access to voluminous amounts of data. The analysis of this data and the conclusions drawn from it will have a major impact on public policy, business, and personal decisions.
The net effect of this could go either way–it can usher in a period of unprecedented efficiency, novelty, and positive decision making or it can precipitate deleterious actions. Data does not speak for itself. How we analyze and interpret that data matters a great deal, which puts a premium on statistical literacy for everyone–not just PhDs and policy wonks.
In order to drive home how important it is to be open-minded about acquiring a new language, I printed this for my class and asked them to communicate with me. I did not explain what the new language was!
IF YOU COULD MAKE A REASONABLE “SENTENCE” - CONGRATULATIONS,YOU’VE JUST SPOKEN BONOBO (via lexigrams)!!! http://spectrum.ieee.org/computing/softwar e/apes-with-apps/0
Mission of the International Statistical Literacy Project The mission of the International Statistical Literacy Project (ISLP) is to support, create and participate in statistical literacy activities and promotion around the world. To facilitate communication among many countries and projects, we support this webpage, which is a forum where those interested in acquiring or providing statistical literacy can meet (in a virtual sense), exchange needs, information and resources, and learn to disseminate statistical literacy in their communities. It replaces the World Numeracy Project of the International Statistical Institute(ISI).International Statistical Institute
Numeracy in the NewsNumeracy in the News, features 313 full-text newspaper articles from The Mercury in Hobart, and other News Limited newspapers throughout Australia are available. Most articles have linked questions for students and discussions for teachers. You can recognize these pages of content by the following icons. Newspaper Articles, Student Questions, Teacher Discussion. The articles and questions have not been designated for particular grade levels. This is because there is likely to be a wide range of literacy and numeracy skills in any given class. Many articles have associated with them both basic numeracy questions and more advanced questions for senior students. Teachers will need to peruse questions and decide which are appropriate for particular students.
Chance News http://chance.dartmouth.edu/chancewiki/ http://chance.dartmouth.edu/chancewiki/ (New version) http://www.dartmouth.edu/~cha nce (Old version) This is a web-site that is rich in ideas using the latest news. Summaries of articles are presented often with suggestions for questions. Charts and graphs are often included. Many of the articles show errors in how people think about statistics. The breadth of the topics is large so that everyone should be able to find topics of interest. I just glanced in the latest issue and found articles about baseball, hamburgers, obesity, and slot machines. There is also an archive of past Chance News.http://www.dartmouth.edu/~cha nce
LINK TO NZAMT 2.11 FORUM http://www.nzmaths.co.n z/plc/anne-and-andrews- ncea-level-two- forum/as211-evaluate- statistically-based- report#comments
“Roses are red, Violets are blue. Respecting standard confidence levels, let's assume it's simply true.“
MY ATTEMPT: ROSES ARE RED, VIOLETS ARE BLUE; CALCULUS IS GREAT BUT STATS IS POO!”