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Activity Number: 496 - Building a Computing Age #StatisticsCurriculum for Biomedical Scientists
Type: Invited
Date/Time: Wednesday, August 1, 2018 : 10:30 AM to 12:20 PM
Sponsor: Section on Teaching of Statistics in the Health Sciences
Abstract #326527 Presentation
Title: A Guide to Teaching Data Science
Author(s): Rafael Irizarry*
Companies: Harvard University
Keywords: Data Science; statistics; Irizarry; Hicks; Guide; introductory

Demand for data science education is surging and traditional courses offered by statistics departments are not meeting the needs of those seeking training. This has led to a number of opinion pieces advocating for an update to the Statistics curriculum. The unifying recommendation is computing should play a more prominent role. We strongly agree with this recommendation, but advocate the main priority is to bring applications to the forefront as proposed by Nolan and Speed (1999). We also argue that the individuals tasked with developing data science courses should not only have statistical training, but also have experience analyzing data with the main objective of solving real-world problems. Here, we share a set of general principles and offer a detailed guide derived from our successful experience developing and teaching a graduate-level, introductory data science course centered entirely on case studies. We argue for the importance of statistical thinking, as defined by Wild and Pfannkuck (1999) and describe how our approach teaches students three key skills needed to succeed in data science, which we refer to as creating, connecting, and computing.

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

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