Tag Archives: Data

Chris Wild – Getting Further with Data Analysis Faster and Easier

In September 2015 Professor Chris Wild from the Department of Statistics at the
University of Auckland, New Zealand, gave a PedRIO (Pedagogic Research Institute and Observatory at the University of Plymouth) talk at Plymouth University entitled Getting Further with Data Analysis Faster and Easier.

Chris talked about his recent work with Future Learn developing a MOOC for the University of Auckland. The Future Learn platform and the introductory statistics course entitled ‘Data to Insight’ has been mentioned here before.

In addition, and the main focus of the presentation, Chris talks about the use of software to teach statistics faster and easier, using examples from iNZight, the data analysis software, to demonstrate thisinzight_transp.

The talk was very well attended and included academic staff from across the University. We would like to thank Chris for his presentation and all those who attended and made the event what it was, as well as PedRio for hosting the talk.

Chris was keen to collaborate with others on new and existing projects so please visit his site and email him should you have any further comments or questions.

Notes

The video covers the first 40 minuets of the presentation. Video clips from the MOOC, that are now freely available online (check the previous blog post), have been removed to shorten the video.  A further half hour has also been removed, this included an extended live demo of the iNZight software that was not clear enough to view in the video.

This video is a .MOV and may take a while to download.

Dr Michael A Posner – School Statistics Talk

Here is a link to the presentation (PowerPoint) by Dr Posner for his school STEM talk he gave recently here at Plymouth.

This is just the first half, the second half containing the activities has been removed as it would be difficult for someone to deliver these without supporting material. However if you are interested in finding out more please visit Dr Posner’s profile page at Villanova University.

The talk detailed Dr Posner’s personal journey to becoming AssociatArt_of_Stats_Talke Professor of Statistics in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at Villanova University. It covered the STEM career opportunities for those studying statistics, the importance of data and some innovative uses of data. It also included some current trending topics such as Big Data and the rise of the Data Scientist.

 “For Today’s Graduate, Just One Word: Statistics”

- NYTimes (2009)

We would again like to thank Dr Posner for his time and of course the two local schools who brought their pupils along and made the event possible ( these were Plymouth High School for Girls and Stover School).

Talk_on_Statistics_Plymouth University_Jan2016

Unfortunately the sound recording from this session had far too much echo and wasn’t clear, if there is time in the future we will put up a transcript of the Q&A.

Dr Michael A. Posner – Propensity Score Analysis

Recently Dr Michael A. Posner, Associate Professor of Statistics, Villanova University, USA, visited Plymouth University.

Dr. Posner gave two talks during his visit the first of which is now available to view online. The talk held on the 20th of January 2016 was entitled ‘Making Valid Inferences in Observational Studies using Propensity Score Analysis’, you can read the full abstract by downloading the leaflet for the day, linked below.

Making Valid Inferences in Observational Studies using Propensity Score Analysis

We would like to thank Michael for his visit and talk, we have had wonderful comments from attendees to both talks and have had many requests externally for links to the presentation. Incidentally, if you would rather view just the slides you can view Michael’s profile and previous talks on his profile page, linked to above and in the leaflet.

We would like to thank PedRIO (Pedagogic Research Institute and Observatory at the University of Plymouth) who supported the event and of course all those who attended, we had a great turnout with a wide cross section of academic staff from across the University.

Notes

The audience audio for the questions and answers segment was not totally clear so these are part of a separate video.

These videos are .MOV and large and may take a while to download.

There are more videos from other talks to follow, once these are done they will all be added to our resource page.

 

Data, Traffic and the need for Statisticians

arrow-44131_1280Although unrelated to statistical education or our activities we thought a recent local news story might be a good ‘piece for the archive’ for the statistical education champions out there.

The story in question regards the closure of a recently created bus lane along a busy stretch of road in to and out of a small city, Truro, located in Cornwall, South West UK.  For the full details  via the local newspaper use the link below.

Apart from the costs involved, that incidentally do not cover the difficult to measure knock-on costs related to delays, the most significant point  is that a measure intended to ease congestion and speed up journey times for road users has had the exact opposite effect.

Truro bus lane will be scrapped on Monday

This is a vast over-simplification to illustrate a point – traffic control is a fairly universal issue, common to civil authorities of any municipality large or small, and this is a nice example of how things can go wrong if data diligence (I just made that up) is not done or not done with great care. What can we learn from this?

1.  There is a general lack of knowledge and skill when it comes to the use of statistics and data handling, even among those in technical careers .

2. Employ a statistician, they could save you £60,000 in the long run.

As a frivolous afterthought…even if data for this particular stretch of road did not exist, it almost certainly did exist and must, one would hope, have informed the planning decision. You can download data for South West roads via the Department of Transport website that would provide an insight helpful for planning – make of it what you will.

Traffic Points – Cornwall traffic profile for 2000 to 2014

 

School Event – Plymouth University

Following our news last week that Dr Michael A Posner will be visiting Plymouth to give a PedRio talk we can now announce that Dr Posner will also be giving a talk for local schools while he is in Plymouth.

Dr. Posner is an Associate Professor of Statistics, Villanova University, and director of the Center for Statistical Education (USA), he is currently on sabbatical at The Department of Pure Mathematics and Mathematical Statistics Centre for Mathematical Sciences at the University of Cambridge.

The school event will be held at Plymouth University (on the main campus) on the 21st of January from 10:00 until 11:30, and is for Y10-Y12 and beyond. Entitled “Statistics – The Art and Science of Making Decisions with Data” the event will include a short informal talk with questions and answers and then an activity, this event would be ideal for students looking to begin a career in STEM

If you would like some of your students to attend, or require further details, please contact us as soon as possible via email at icse@plymouth.ac.uk, you can download more information here.

The American Statistician – The Undergraduate Curriculum

The American Statistician, the official journal of the American Statistical Association, have a special issue focusing on the undergraduate curriculum. You can read the press statement and access the journal pages using the links below.

Although this issues looks at Undergraduate Programmes in Statistical Science in the States there will be a great deal to interest those involved at this level in the UK.

On a related note, there is an extremely good interview with Professor Stephen Fienberg on the Statistics Views blog (dated November 10th 2015). The interview has some insights into the future of data science and the use of Big Data. Find it on the link below.

 

Don’t Panic – How to End Poverty in 15 Years

Tomorrow night on BBC TWO (UK) Statistician Professor Hans Rosling is back with more amazing visualisations, showing the world how we can end poverty. This is part of the BBC’s This World series, find out more using the link below.

Professor Rosling is an excellent communicator and educator who likes to let data do the talking with some exceptional data visualisations. Watch the programme live on the 23rd September (8:00pm, BBC TWO) or catch it on the iPlayer (UK) afterward.

Many of you will be familiar with the GapMinder project and the previous programme shown on the BBC to feature Professor Rosling entitled The Joy of Stats, this appears to now be available, in full, on YouTube.

Census Applications: Using the UK population census data

The UKData Service are holding a two day event at the University of Manchester in July (16 – 17) entitled “Census Applications: Using the UK population census data“.

The UK population census data provides the most compressive snapshot of life in the UK today, it isn’t just about allocating money to local authorities to run public services it can be used to help to track and analyse social and economic trends and capture the diversity of our people.

This looks to be a highly informative event.  You can find out more by visiting the UKData Service on the link below. There is also a link to our very own CensusAtSchool project, that demonstrates how census data can be introduced to the classroom to enliven multiple subjects with real data.UKData Service Logo