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Activity Number: 476 - Teaching Introductory Statistics
Type: Contributed
Date/Time: Wednesday, August 2, 2017 : 8:30 AM to 10:20 AM
Sponsor: Section on Statistical Education
Abstract #322583 View Presentation
Title: The Influence of Undergraduate Statistics and Statistics Anxiety on Graduate Statistics Success
Author(s): Michael DeDonno*
Companies: Florida Atlantic University
Keywords: Graduate statistics ; education ; statistics anxiety ; academic performance

The purpose of the present study was to investigate the influence of an undergraduate statistics course, statistics anxiety, and attitude towards statistics on success in a graduate statistics course. A total of fifty-three graduate students from a public university in the southeastern United States participated in the study. All participants were working towards their non-STEM Master's degree. Participants were categorized into one of two groups; participants who completed an undergraduate statistics course, and participants who did not complete an undergraduate statistics course. All participants completed a statistics knowledge task on the first day of class (Time 1) and the last day of class (Time 2). Participants also completed the Statistics Anxiety Rating Scale. To determine the unique contribution of an undergraduate statistics course on test performance, an Analysis of Covariance (ANCOVA) was conducted. The independent variable was completion of an undergraduate statistics course (Yes, No), while the dependent variable was performance on a statistics test at the end of the graduate statistics course (Time 2). The covariate variable was performance on a statistics test on the first day of the graduate statistics course (Time 1). After adjusting for the Time 1 statistics test, there was a statistically significant difference at Time 2 between the individuals who had completed an undergraduate statistics class and those who did not complete an undergraduate statistics class, F(1, 52) = 33.661, p < .005, partial ?2 = .402. To determine unique contributions of statistics anxiety, a multiple regression, forced entry method, was conducted. The predictor variables were the Anxiety and Attitude subscales of the STARS, while the criterion variable was performance on the statistics test at Time 2. Results revealed that the predictor variables explained a significant proportion of the variance in statistics test performance at Time 2, R=.494, R2 =.244, Adjusted R2 = .209, F(2,43)=6.942, p< .005. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed.

Authors who are presenting talks have a * after their name.

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