Tu-05: A Fresh Shot at Statistics in the Classroom: Three Perspectives using World Cup Soccer Player Data

By Brenna Curley (Moravian College); Anna Peterson (Iowa State University)


In this poster we share activities revolving around soccer players who participated in the 2018 FIFA World Cup and 2019 FIFA Women’s World Cup. Classroom activities are described from three different perspectives, useful for a range of different level statistics courses. In a first semester probability theory course, students investigate the counter-intuitive birthday paradox empirically and theoretically. For an introductory data science course, students practice their data wrangling skills using the statistical software, R. Additional activities are shared for those instructors interested in emphasizing multivariable thinking in a second semester applied statistical modeling course. The activities we share align with the revised Guidelines for Assessment and Instruction in Statistics Education (GAISE) college report (GAISE 2016) and explicitly use technology to support the fact that modern statistical analyses rely on computation.  For example, the activities revolve around a real-life scenario -- FIFA World Cup soccer players (GAISE recommendation #3). All activities have students practice using the statistical software, R (GAISE recommendations #5) whether it be for data wrangling, probability simulations or multivariable analysis. The activities are created around the underlying goal of having students problem solve their way through a hands-on experience (GAISE recommendations #1). Finally, activities are designed to be used in a lab setting (e.g., ideally no more than 50-60 students) where students work in collaborative groups (GAISE recommendation #4). The activities shared will provide a range of opportunities for instructors to incorporate the FIFA World Cup data in their own courses. (We acknowledge that this work was submitted to the Journal of Statistics Education as a Datasets & Stores article and is currently under revisions to resubmit.)


Tu-05 - A Fresh Shot at Statistics in the Classroom - Three Perspectives using World Cup Soccer Player Data.pdf