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Activity Number: 189 - Contributed Poster Presentations: Section on Statistical Education
Type: Contributed
Date/Time: Monday, July 29, 2019 : 10:30 AM to 12:20 PM
Sponsor: Section on Statistics and Data Science Education
Abstract #305229
Title: "Why Am I Failing?": The Importance of Basic Quantitative Skills in a Business Statistics Course
Author(s): Deborah Gougeon*
Companies: Univ of Scranton
Keywords: Business Statistics; Quantitative Skills; Numeracy Skills

Students’ lack of basic quantitative skills is a common concern among educators who teach Business Statistics courses on the undergraduate level. Statistical literacy is a key element in the curriculum of most business programs, and lack of appropriate numeracy skills is a major road block to the acquisition of such literacy for many undergraduate students. These students may understand the concepts presented, but are often limited in their statistical problem-solving skills, primarily because they are not fluent in basic operations such as fractions, decimals, and percents. As a result, these inadequacies create difficulties with problem-solving in areas such as probability, discrete and continuous distributions, interval estimation, and hypothesis testing. To test this thesis, a thirty-three question survey,which incorporated basic arithmetic operations, was administered to 268 undergraduate business students during their first class in a two-semester course in Business Statistics. Calculators were not permitted. Results show that, while knowledge of basic quantitative skills is assumed,the majority of these students lack even the most rudimentary math/algebra skills.

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

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