AbstractAlthough learning objectives for social statistics courses typically include informed consumption of everyday statistical claims, students are rarely provided explicit opportunities to practice this skill. This is unfortunate because the journalistic accounts to which students are regularly exposed through news or social media vary widely in their...
- Subject Area(s):
- Resource Type(s):
- Assignment, Class Activity
- Class Level(s):
- College 400
- Class Size(s):
Usage Notes1. Time required: This resource may take anywhere from 1-3 hours to complete. The ideal implementation is as an in-class group activity begun during one class session and completed during a second session. However, some alternatives to this format include a) as an individual project worked on progressively throughout the semester as students acquire...
Learning Goals and Assessments
- Identify claims in news print media that can be subjected to empirical verification through statistical analysis
- Decide on the appropriate statistical technique for estimating the association between two or more variables based on their levels of measurement
- Evaluate the veracity of news media claims and the quality of the evidence presented for them
- Choose variables at specified levels of measurement from the General Social Survey (GSS) data for 2016 and search for articles on news media websites that make claims about the relationships between the chosen variables, in three rounds
- Choose between chi-square independence test, two-sample t test, or ordinary least-squares regression techniques; run the analysis using SPSS; and interpret the resulting output
- Rate the quality of the evidence presented in news media articles for chosen claims; decide whether the results of the statistical analysis support or critique the claims; and offer recommendations for improving the evidence presented in the articles