By Damien Raftery (Institute of Technology Carlow)
For students to engage, their curiosity must be piqued. However encouraging intrinsic motivation can be difficult. When introducing a topic, a valuable approach is to present students with a scenario and then ask them to make a prediction or estimate. This challenges them to pause, to think and to develop a logic for their prediction. Then collect the predictions using a student response system and display the results to the class. This provides an opportunity to ponder (to think a little more) and for peer discussion (how did you make that prediction? do you think it is accurate?). The scene is also set for exploring any related statistical concepts.
Asking students to make predictions can help develop interest and an intellectual need for the statistical approach that can be used to answer the original question. Drawing on relevant literature and illustrated with examples, this virtual poster will explore the process and benefits of getting students to make predictions and estimates.