comparing box plot distributions:

A teacherís reasoning

 

Maxine Pfannkuch

The University of Auckland, New Zealand

m.pfannkuch@auckland.ac.nz

 

ABSTRACT

 

Drawing conclusions from the comparison of datasets using informal statistical inference is a challenging task since the nature and type of reasoning expected is not fully understood. In this paper a secondary teacherís reasoning from the comparison of box plot distributions during the teaching of a Year 11 (15-year-old) class is analyzed. From the analysis a model incorporating ten distinguishable elements is established to describe her reasoning. The model highlights that reasoning in the sampling and referent elements is ill formed. The methods of instruction, and the difficulties and richness of verbalizing from the comparison of box plot distributions are discussed. Implications for research and educational practice are drawn.

 

Keywords: Statistics education research; Box plots; Distributional reasoning; Secondary statistics teaching; Informal statistical inference

 

 

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Statistics Education Research Journal, 5(2), 27-45, http://www.stat.auckland.ac.nz/serj

International Association for Statistical Education (IASE/ISI), November, 2006

 

 

 

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Maxine Pfannkuch

Department of Statistics

The University of Auckland

Private Bag 92019

Auckland, New Zealand