Reading and Understanding Statistical Reports

Reading and Understanding Statistical Reports - student project

Statistics are unavoidable in modern life. We see them in everything from news stories about political polls, to scientific articles in peer-reviewed journals, to technical reports we need to understand at work. 

This class will show you how to interpret these statistics in an easy, intuitive manner. As a bonus, it will make you a better consumer of the statistics we see in everyday life. When you see a news story that claims researchers have shown some surprising result, you will know how to find the actual research. You may be surprised at how often the news story makes a claim that is not at all supported by the research!

Link to Course Outline

Link to Introduction Video



The class project will be to read a provided research paper and answer the following questions:

  1. What was the research question?
  2. How was the data collected?
  3. What descriptive statistics or graphical displays were published?
  4. What were the results of their statistical analysis?
  5. What conclusions did they draw?
  6. Do the authors pose any further questions? Do you?