# MAT 200 – Statistics Project

MAT 200 – Statistics Project

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Final Project Details

Your project assignment is to collect and analyze data using good statistical design, thinking and analytic methods we have learned this year. The topic choice is yours, but it needs to be feasible (able to be completed in 1 semester). It also should be interesting and fun! You may work by yourself or with one other student but each student must show evidence of work completed.

Requirements

1. Choose a good question (make a hypothesis).

Note:  It is a wonderful idea to choose a topic that is geared toward your major or that another professor might allow you to use in their class as well. You must obtain permission from me and from the other teacher if you are going to do a similar project for more than one class. If you have ideas for longer projects or you are involved in research in your major – discuss this with me. I am very open to hearing and allowing different requirements for great ideas!!

1. Design an appropriate survey, study or experiment.
2. Collect data; they may come from a survey, observational study, experiment. You must describe in statistical terms the method you used to collect the data. There must be AT LEAST 50 raw data items (100 if 2 people working together). You must include at least 2-3 pictures (or a video) of where and how you collected the data – interesting photos of you giving a survey at Starbucks or you and your partner counting cars in a parking lot for example. Note: use common sense when collecting data!
3. Summarize your data using appropriate graphical displays, summary statistics, and or verbal descriptions. The data must be graphed or organized in at least 3 different methods. You must do 5 methods if working with a partner.
4. Make sound inferences/conclusions based on your data. State your conclusions clearly. Does the data support your hypothesis – why or why not? It does not affect your grade if your hypothesis is wrong but it will greatly affect your grade if you don’t show that you were wrong!
5. Submit a complete written report. Not just a copy of your power point. You must write a 2-5 page paper (as long as needed to include steps 1-5 above). The paper must include an appendix which lists all of your raw data.
6. (If not online) Present your research to the class using a poster or a power point presentation or both.

What Is a Statistical Project?

A statistical project is the process of answering a research question using statistical techniques and presenting the work in a written report. The research question may arise from any field of scientific endeavor, such as athletics, advertising, aerodynamics, or nutrition. This project will include a power point or a statistical poster and a written report to present the findings.

Data-Based Problem Solving
The process of developing a statistical project should demonstrate the scientific method and pose a focused question or questions, collect appropriate data, analyze the data thoughtfully, and draw correct conclusions.

Once a question is proposed, you should carefully examine it. First, is it a question that can be answered? (The question “Is there intelligent life in the universe that does not come from Earth?” is an extremely interesting question, but not one that is likely to be answered in a short-term project.) Second, can you collect data to answer the question in the time frame that you have.

Once the question is chosen, data must be collected. You must collect your own data. Time should be spent deciding how to collect this data. If a survey is used, how are the people chosen to answer the questionnaire? If two treatments (i.e., models, grades, genders, etc.) are to be compared, how can comparisons be made fairly? How will the data be recorded?

After the details have been worked out, students are ready to obtain the data. Great care should be exercised at every stage of data collection. Careless measurement or recording of data cannot be remedied in the analysis phase of a project.

Thoughtful analysis of the data may take many forms and should be guided by the question and how the data was collected. Once analysis is complete, the question should be answered. The data may not be able to provide a conclusive answer. For example, one treatment may appear to be better than another, but the difference was not significant. If the question has a definitive answer, that should be presented. A check should be made at this point to make certain the answer matches the question. It is easy to get caught up in the analysis phase and obtain many answers, none of which addresses the research question

The Written Report

Great latitude may be taken in developing the written report. Students should plan how to communicate their work effectively. The longest report does not necessarily represent the best project. However, the report must accomplish the following:

• Demonstrate how and why the particular topic was chosen
• Show how the research was conducted
• Delineate what conclusions were obtained
• Include the collected data and its analysis
• Discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the selected statistical methods. What would you do differently if you did another statistics project?

Term-Long Assignment

This project will be completed over the entire semester. You will add more to your project as the semester progresses and you learn more about the study of statistics. You will be asked to complete the following steps during the whole term, with deadlines posted in our Coursework in Eagleweb.

Step 1: Upload a “rough draft” of what your study will be – you can modify as we go along.

2. Submit either your survey questions or the observational study that you plan to complete.
3. Explain which sampling technique you will use and how you will accomplish it
4. Make a preliminary hypothesis

1. Compile your raw data. You must have at least 50 data items unless you have prior permission from me to have less (based on your topic)
2. On Excel (preferably) make a
1. Tally
2. Frequency distribution
3. Relative Frequency Distribution
4. 2 graphs that you believe represent your data the most informatively – histogram, line graph, bar graph, ojive, pie chart.

Eventually all this EXCEL Information will be moved to a Word Doc to print out in poster form. If you want to do that for this assignment you can. Pick a layout you think would look good in poster form. Look on the wall outside Tarpley 310 for sample posters.

1. With Excel (or other technology)
2. Use the data analysis tool to compute various statistics associated to your data
3. Apply inferential statistics (hypothesis testing, for instance) relevant to your data and your project
4. Explain using statistics and your results why/not your hypotheses was correct. It does not change the validity of your study if you demonstrate why your hypothesis was wrong. Many many many excellent studies disprove their original hypotheses!

Final Project Paper (Report):

2. Upload a copy of ALL your survey questioners and/or raw data.

Final Project Presentation (if not an online class):

1. Have a presentation ready – this could be a PowerPoint, a “poster” printed from our big printer in PSOE or from Staples (\$4), or a cut and paste project on a cardboard backboard. REMEMBER: An important part of statistics is presenting data in a useful and informative way. A messy, unclear or unlabeled graph is useless. You should ask people that don’t know what you are studying what your graphs tell them. If they don’t know….fix it! Your information should be presented so clearly that an average 12 year old should be able to understand what your graph is showing them.
2. On the last two days of the regular class (right after our last midterm) you will present your findings to the class and be ready to answer any questions they have.
3. Many of your projects will be worthy to present in the Convocation of Artists and Scholars. This is something you will have on your resume well into your career search. Reinhardt’s best student minds and talent convene every spring for the University’s annual Robert L. Driscoll Convocation of Artists & Scholars or COAS. The week boasts music recitals, creative writing readings, a student research conference, Education and Sports Studies student presentations, student art and science exhibits, and internship presentations. The public is welcome and encouraged to attend this unique scholarly event. http://www.reinhardt.edu/academics/COAS.html