Conference Paper

  • This study examined ways the elementary school teachers represented their understanding of the broad area of statistics. Special attention was paid to their understanding of the relationships among four critical statistics concepts in the North Carolina Standard Course of Study for Grades K-6. Relationships were examined through concept maps that the inservice teachers drew at the beginning of a three-week summer workshop on statistics.

  • The purpose of the present study was to identify the areas in graphical representations that elementary teachers fixated on, as well as, their alternative conceptions of several statistical concepts. The specific research questions were: 1) What features of a line plot and histogram do elementary teachers fixate on when interpreting data? 2) What alternative conceptions do elementary teachers have about center or middle of the data, typical, and prediction when interpreting graphical representations of data?

  • One primary goal of TEACH-STAT (a three-year project funded by the National Science Foundation) is to help elementary school teachers in North Carolina learn how to teach data analysis and interpretation more effectively, that is, learn the pedagogy of statistics. In Spring 1992, the first cohort of 55, K-6 teachers completed a baseline survey of their knowledge of statistics pedagogy; these teachers then participated in a three-week workshop in summer 1992. At the outset, teachers seemed to (a) have limited views of what should be taught in order for students to understand data interpretation, (b) emphasize isolated bits of knowledge, mainly about graphing, and (c) have little knowledge of pedagogy for important ideas. At the conclusion of the workshop, teachers' views of statistics seemed to have shifted more toward a holistic view of statistics content, with accompanying increases in knowledge of particular pedagogical strategies to address the components of statistics understanding.

  • In this work we want to underline the fact that the use of the statistical tool in experimental and social sciences, in general, and in the didactics of mathematics in particular is converted, in this field of knowledge, in a specific object of the study, due to the mathematical nature of the concepts and to the didactic processes implied.

  • Students from many disciplines take statistics as part of their degree requirement. Some of these students lack the mathematical background to follow theoretical proofs and/or the expertise to conceptualize abstract concepts. Concrete examples may provide the best means to aid these students in grasping statistical principles. This paper highlights the use of computers to create, analyze, and present data that models a wide range of statistical concepts. An illustration of the technique is presented for explaining the Central Limit Theorem, Type I error rates, and a host of other statistical concepts.

  • As part of a study of students' constructions of the idea of "average," teachers were also interviewed using the same problems and format as used with the students.

  • This paper reports on a clinical study of students' productive understanding of database record/field structures. Using a data analysis tool with which they were familiar, students were asked to create a database structure that would allow them to produce a desired graph. A recurring pattern was observed in which subjects produced a set-based structure instead of the required property-based structure.

  • For this study, the probability problem-solving processes of 104 graduate students enrolled in different sections of an introductory probability and statistics course at an urban college of education were analyzed for the presence and type of errors occurring in their work.

  • The objective of this study is to compare the effects of two instructional approaches designed to overcome errors in the interpretation of psychological research.

  • Contents: 1. Introduction 2. On the Basic Understanding of School Mathematics 3. Probability - A New Paradigm for Mathematical Concepts in the School Curriculum? 3.1 Concept and Meaning 3.2 Concept and Means 3.3 Concept and Learning 4. The Mathematical Concept as an Interplay of Experimental and Theoretical Elements References