JSM 2011 Online Program

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Abstract Details

Activity Number: 419
Type: Contributed
Date/Time: Tuesday, August 2, 2011 : 2:00 PM to 3:50 PM
Sponsor: Section on Statistical Education
Abstract - #303343
Title: Assessing the Change in Student Attitudes Toward Statistics at the University of Tennessee
Author(s): Ramon Leon*+ and Adam Petrie
Companies: University of Tennessee and University of Tennessee
Address: SMC 337, Knoxville, TN, 37996, United States
Keywords: attitudes ; introductory ; classes ; SATS-36 ; blog ; tutors

The SATS-36© survey measures six aspects of student attitudes towards statistics and collects additional information about students' backgrounds. Pre-class and post-class scores can be analyzed to assess changes in these attitudes. In this study, we examine initial attitudes and attitude changes for approximately 950 students at the University of Tennessee enrolled in a variety of introductory statistics courses during spring semester 2011. We find that while attitudes towards statistics generally start out slightly positive, they become less positive or even shift slightly negative by the end of the semester. We find that a student's initial confidence for being able to master statistics and whether they would choose to take a statistics class if it was not required to be consistent indicators of initial attitudes. Further, we find that the gender, grade point average, and major to be predictors of the change in attitude.

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