Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Finalizing the Poster for JSM

Finalizing my poster for the Joint Statistical Meetings is much harder than I thought that it would be. I've got the paper in which I can explain things, but I feel that I need to limit the graphs and computer output. But with the poster, you want graphs and output and limit the words.

I've got around 11 - 12 sheets of paper to tell my story at 24 point font. The point of the JSM poster is to discuss simple analyses that instructors can do with their SATS results. I keep thinking of more things to add.

What about pre-test answers to "How good at mathematics are you?" Guess what . . . Students earning higher grades responded more favorably to the question. Is that so obvious that no one would want to know that? Or should it be included because it confirms what instructors would think would be true?

Tomorrow I fly to Pennsylvania to visit my friend Carmen. Carmen and I met years ago at a conference and have been friends for almost 10 years. This will be the first time that I've been to Carmen's house. We will drive to D.C. on Sunday for JSM. Finding someone that you can share a hotel room at conferences is a good thing, and it is even better when you become friends! In 2006, I visited her in Chile when she was on sabbatical and then we went to the Internation Conference on Teaching Statistics (ICOTS) in Brazil.

Last week, I submitted to MC's Human Subject Review Board the request to continue The SATS Project. When doing research with humans, one needs to get Board approval especially if you will be presenting your work. The SATS is noninvasive and does not cause harm, but we still get Board approval and students sign a consent form (as well as instructors).

Okay, back to work.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Pictures from USCOTS

USCOTS and first half of July

We have 6 members in the cluster group plus Candace and I. We had two meetings with the entire group and several individual meetings. One member is working on her dissertation -- translating the SATS and working to align elements of the SATS with some educational theories.

Working through Survey Monkey, I've got all the surveys ready for the Fall data collection (Pre-test, Post-test, Instructor survey, Course survey, and Request Survey). I spent a lot of time working on the request survey. We've had researchers who want to match the SATS results with some other results (exams, attendance, Statistical Reasoning Assessment (SRA), Comprehensive Assessment of Outcomes in a First Statistics course (CAOS), etc.). Since our Board approval and consent form does not allow us to give instructors students' names, we can't help these researchers. Our solution is for researchers to give the results which need to be matched in the Grade file. We'll do the matching and then give the researchers the file without the names. Believe it or not, this solution took us some time to develop it! It seems so simple now.

I've been chasing the last of the grade files while Candace has been writing code to help with the matching. Data collection this Spring has been a nightmare.

I'm still working on the TAS paper. This paper will be very similar to the poster that I will be presenting in D.C. in August.

Oh yes, the cluster group had its first conference call on the 21st. We discussed EVT (Expectancy Value Theory of Motivation). I must admit that I didn't follow everything that was discussed. But I will spend some more time studying.

Lots of work this week.