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ERIC Number: ED501154
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2003-Jul
Pages: 8
Abstractor: Author
Reference Count: 8
Statistical Variation in a Chance Setting
Watson, Jane M.; Kelly, Ben A.
International Group for the Psychology of Mathematics Education, Paper presented at the 27th International Group for the Psychology of Mathematics Education Conference Held Jointly with the 25th PME-NA Conference (Honolulu, HI, Jul 13-18, 2003), v4 p387-394
A series of 13 survey questions based on a 50-50 spinner is used to explore school students' understanding of statistical variation in a chance setting. Five questions set the context by assessing understanding of theoretical expectation and representation of repeated trials in a stacked dot (line) plot. Four questions provide opportunity to display appreciation of variation from point expectation and four questions address variation from distributional expectation. A total of 707 students in grades 3 to 9 answered some or all of these questions. A subset of 334 students then took part in a unit of study on chance and data emphasising variation. These students answered a post-test including the same items. Analysis showed a progression across the years of schooling, plateauing at grade 7 and improvement for all grades after instruction. Implications are considered. (Contains 1 figure and 6 tables.) [For complete proceedings, see ED500860.]
International Group for the Psychology of Mathematics Education. 35 Aandwind Street, Kirstenhof, Cape Town, 7945, South Africa. Tel: +27-21-715-3559; Fax: +27-88-021-715-3559; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: Grade 3; Grade 4; Grade 5; Grade 6; Grade 7; Grade 8; Grade 9
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: Australian Research Council.
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia