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Archive of posts filed under the Teaching category.

Hurricanes/himmicanes extra: Again with the problematic nature of the scientific publication process

Jeremy Freese has the story. To me, the sad thing is not that people who don’t understand statistics are doing research. After all, statistics is hard, and to require statistical understanding of all quantitative researchers would be impossible to enforce in any case. Indeed, if anything, one of the goals of the statistical profession is […]

He’s not so great in math but wants to do statistics and machine learning

I received the following email from someone who wishes to remain anonymous: I am a longtime reader of your blog and it, along with other factors that I will explain briefly, has motivated to pursue a second masters degree in statistics and machine learning. The problem is, my math isn’t great. I understand statistics and […]

Statistically savvy journalism

Roy Mendelssohn points me to this excellent bit of statistics reporting by Matt Novak. I have no comment, I just think it’s good to see this sort of high-quality Felix Salmon-style statistically savvy journalism.

Why we hate stepwise regression

Haynes Goddard writes: I have been slowly working my way through the grad program in stats here, and the latest course was a biostats course on categorical and survival analysis. I noticed in the semi-parametric and parametric material (Wang and Lee is the text) that they use stepwise regression a lot. I learned in econometrics […]

An interesting mosaic of a data programming course

Rajit Dasgupta writes: I have been working on a website, SlideRule that in its present state, is a catalog of online courses aggregated from over 35 providers. One of the products we are building on top of this is something called Learning Paths, which are essentially a sequence of Online Courses designed to help learners […]

Stan (& JAGS) Tutorial on Linear Mixed Models

Shravan Vasishth sent me an earlier draft of this tutorial he co-authored with Tanner Sorensen. I liked it, asked if I could blog about it, and in response, they’ve put together a convenient web page with links to the tutorial PDF, JAGS and Stan programs, and data: Fitting linear mixed models using JAGS and Stan: […]

Understanding Simpson’s paradox using a graph

Joshua Vogelstein pointed me to this post by Michael Nielsen on how to teach Simpson’s paradox. I don’t know if Nielsen (and others) are aware that people have developed some snappy graphical methods for displaying Simpson’s paradox (and, more generally, aggregation issues). We do some this in our Red State Blue State book, but before […]

Just gave a talk

I just gave a talk in Milan. Actually I was sitting at my desk, it was a g+ hangout which was a bit more convenient for me. The audience was a bunch of astronomers so I figured they could handle a satellite link. . . . Anyway, the talk didn’t go so well. Two reasons: […]

A statistical graphics course and statistical graphics advice

Dean Eckles writes: Some of my coworkers at Facebook and I have worked with Udacity to create an online course on exploratory data analysis, including using data visualizations in R as part of EDA. The course has now launched at so anyone can take it for free. And Kaiser Fung has reviewed it. So definitely feel free […]

Teaching Bayesian applied statistics to graduate students in political science, sociology, public health, education, economics, . . .

One of the most satisfying experiences for an academic is when someone asks a question that you’ve already answered. This happened in the comments today. Daniel Gotthardt wrote: So for applied stat courses like for sociologists, political scientists, psychologists and maybe also for economics, what do we actually want to accomplish with our intro courses? […]