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United States Conference on Teaching Statistics Almost Here

1 April 2013 223 views No Comment

USCOTS ’13 will be held May 16–18 at the Embassy Suites Hotel & Conference Center in Raleigh-Durham (Research Triangle), North Carolina. The theme of the conference is “Making Change Happen.”

Change can be difficult, but also exhilarating; scary, but also liberating. Previous USCOTS sessions have advocated various types of changes in teaching statistics likely to produce enhanced student learning. Conference participants often become excited about visionary ideas presented, but struggle to follow through and affect sustained changes at their home institutions. In reaction to these concerns, USCOTS ’13 will address the goal of making change happen.

Speaking of change, two changes in the conference program for this year are the following:

  • An opening session will be held at 7 p.m. on Thursday, May 16. This session will feature five-minute talks about how presenters have personally implemented changes in their own teaching.
  • Following the conference banquet held on the nearby SAS campus on Friday evening, musical/statistical entertainment will be provided by The Fifth Moment, a group of graduate students at North Carolina State University, and Larry Lesser, a professor and statistics education researcher from The University of Texas at El Paso.

The conference will feature plenary presentations by the following:

  • Nicholas Horton (Smith College) and Danny Kaplan (Macalester College), All Statistics Are Wrong, but Some Statistics Are Useful
  • Hollylynne Stohl Lee (North Carolina State University), Envisioning a Future Teacher of Statistics in K–12 Classrooms
  • Xiao-Li Meng (Harvard University), Energizing Higher Education for Statistics and Beyond: T = (IE) 2
  • Chris Wild (University of Auckland), The Need for Speed in the Path of the Deluge

The conference also will include 24 breakout sessions on various topics related to teaching statistics. These sessions actively engage participants and stimulate thought about making changes to one’s teaching. Common themes among these breakout sessions include the following:

  • Preparing teachers of statistics
  • Flipping classrooms
  • Teaching online courses
  • Evaluating the impact of change
  • Integrating software tools
  • Teaching at two-year colleges

Another highlight of the conference is “Posters and Beyond” sessions that facilitate exchange of novel ideas for teaching statistics. Conference exhibitors also will lead sessions that demonstrate their products. Finally, a full slate of nine pre-conference workshops is being offered that allows participants to delve deeply into innovations in statistics education supported by the National Science Foundation.

Visit USCOTS ’13 to view the full program and registration information.

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