Quantitative Methods Assignment


Quantitative Methods Assignment

(Please do NOT take this project unless you’re 100% sure that you’ll get at least B)

Quantitative Methods Assignment

The student is required to demonstrate the creativity to formulate a problem, the ability to collect information, to enter and edit it, to analyse it; and to write an effective and clear report. Ask yourself a question. The question must be relevant to the Quantitative Methods course. Collect all the relevant information, perform any relevant analysis, and then write a report on what you have done. I expect the report to contain between 2500 and 3000 words, although it is the quality rather than the length of the report that matters most. You may collect the data yourself. Alternatively, if appropriate, you may use official statistics. What you may not use is a standard data set from a textbook. Such an approach will not be well received. If you find it necessary to use a computer package such as SPSS, then I expect you to fully use it. Computing simple statistics by hand will not attract many marks. Above everything else, it is the originality and insight provided by the task that I will value: It is better to use simple statistics ef

The student is required to demonstrate the creativity to formulate a problem, the ability to collect information, to enter and edit it, to analyse it; and to write an effective and clear report. Ask yourself a question. The question must be relevant to the Quantitative Methods course. Collect all the relevant information, perform any relevant analysis, and then write a report on what you have done. I expect the report to contain between 2500 and 3000 words, although it is the quality rather than the length of the report that matters most. You may collect the data yourself. Alternatively, if appropriate, you may use official statistics. What you may not use is a standard data set from a textbook. Such an approach will not be well received. If you find it necessary to use a computer package such as SPSS, then I expect you to fully use it. Computing simple statistics by hand will not attract many marks. Above everything else, it is the originality and insight provided by the task that I will value: It is better to use simple statistics ef ectively than to reproduce some complex and standard material, which I could find in a textbook or a journal article. Plagiarism is taken very seriously. Submitting a piece of coursework you have already submitted for another course, perhaps at another university, is not acceptable. Some students decide to obtain some data, apply a particular formula, and report that the answer is 42 or some other meaningless number. Without a context, this is not a valuable exercise. Such studies invariably get bad marks. I value initiative and a demonstration of an inquisitive mind even more than technical ability. Assignment page 1 Examples of Statistical Problems Studied in Previous Years The following is a list of chosen amongst the most interesting from the collection of previous studies: 1.­ Are women safer drivers? Data was obtained from an insurance company on claims by age and sex group. It was found that the answer is ‘Yes’. There are interesting effects in a particular age group when teenager children use mum’s car. 2.­ Death is interesting. An analysis of mortality rates by age and sex in Hampshire compared with the national average. People, particularly women, live longer in Hampshire, but this may indicate that elderly ladies retire here. 3.­ Auto Trader: The weekend football matches were found to affect the effectiveness of tele­canvassers. 4.­ Does the rain in Germany affect the movements in the stock market? It would if people were in a bad mood because of the rain. The data does not support this view. 5.­ Drinking coffee in Thames River. A student had a boat and enjoyed sailing around while drinking coffee. This is difficult if the wind reaches certain strength. The student would not go out to sea if the wind were above a certain limit. Data from the Met Office was used to assess the probability of the wind changing strength while the student was at sea. 13.­ Did it make any difference if a particular player was or was not in the team? A Bristol City fan was very fond of a particular player and argued that when he was not in the team, the match was more likely to be lost. The data did not support the conjecture. 14.­ Do soldiers with larger families receive more letters than soldiers with smaller families? It appears to be the case that the reverse is true. 15.­ The Oxford­Cambridge boat race: The probability of winning was found to increase with the weight of the crew. 16.­ Child abuse in Canada. Is there a relationship between age at register and severity of abuse? 17.­ Simulation of photocopying in the library. What would be the impact on queue lengths of introducing an upper limit on the number of photocopies a student is allowed to make? 18.­ Are music bands with shorter names more successful than music bands with longer names? 6.­ Foreign aid in Sudan. Foreign aid is meant to help a country overcome economic problems and improve its national product. It turns out that the more aid a country receives, the worst off it is in subsequent years. The student invented a rational for this observation. 7.­ Women in Africa. Is the participation of women in the labour force related to the degree of development of the country? 8.­ Cornflakes: Is Kelloggs worth the price? Branded (Kelloggs) cornflakes packets were compared with unbranded own­labels (Safeway, Tesco and Asda). The group laid out criteria for ‘a whole cornflake’. They then counted the number of whole cornflakes in samples of the different brands! They found that Kelloggs had the better quality. 9.­ Payment methods for salesmen. A company used salesmen who were paid according to a series of categories. The amount they received for a sale depended on how the sale had been Assignment page 2 classified. The student proposed a system of commissions. Salesmen were expected to win the same amount of money under the old and the new system. Then the system was modified to encourage large sales. 10.­ Association between results in university degrees and in professional examinations. Are people with relevant degrees at an advantage when taking professional exams? 1 l.­ Does the method of paying for dental care influence the number of interventions that the dentist inflicts on the patient? It used data from before and after a change in funding. 12.­ How many lorries should my father have in his business? The lorries could be leased or rented. The student examined probability distributions and did a kind of simulation to explore the consequences of various policies. 19.­ Analysis of French electoral results. How representative is the Government? 20.­ Bus lateness: Was Orléans Express assertion that buses will be on time, most of the time supported by the data? 21.­ Down syndrome and age of mothers. Is it true that older mothers are more likely to produce children with Down syndrome? This was too ambitious, and the student found it too difficult to cope with the issues. 22.­ Do shoe sales respond to changes in the weather? The intention was to develop an ordering and stock holding policy for a shoe shop. 23.­ How good are forward rates at anticipating changes in the spot rate? Exceptions It will be advisable if you do not choose any of the following problems: 1. Economic analyses, especially those involving econometric data such as gross domestic product. The reason is that such analyses often require more advanced models than we are able to cover in this unit. 2. Olympics: There have been many studies about the Olympics, especially those to do with total medals per country. Inevitably, they all lead to the same conclusion: Big countries get more medals! Assignment page 3 The marking criteria to be used in assessing these assignments is given below: Note: The total marks for each category are as indicated in brackets Report Quality (20%) Style, Presentation, Clarity and Organisation Methodology (20%) Choice and Statement of Research Question; Sampling Data Collection and Manipulation Process: Validity and Quality of Data Quality of Quantitative Model(s) Used (30%) Appropriateness, Correctness and Sophistication Results and Conclusions (20%) Interpretation; Discussion of Limitations, Relevance and Usage Evidence of Further Reading (10%) Assignment page 4

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: