ERIC Number: EJ890113
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005-Jul
Reference Count: 7
"Bring the Sociologist Back in" to Graduate Statistics. A Response to "The Sociology of Teaching Graduate Statistics"
Zipp, John F.
Teaching Sociology, v33 n3 p280-282 Jul 2005
As we enter our second century, it is an appropriate time for sociologists to take stock of where we have been and where we are going. Although most of this reflection appears to focus on substantive matters, Timothy Patrick Moran is right in arguing that their gaze ought to extend to how they teach graduate statistics. This article presents the author's response to Moran's article "The Sociology of Teaching Graduate Statistics." Reading Moran's article, for the most part, the author finds a lot to recommend. Two points are clearly uncontroversial: Graduate statistics courses should emphasize the importance of sociological theory in all phases of the research process--both Moran and him are hopeful that this already happens--and these courses should be sure to include an appropriate dose of statistical theory. Moran suggests, and he may very well be correct, that the need to cover more and more advanced techniques has driven these more basic topics out of the curriculum. The author mentions that perhaps this is the best way to characterize one of Moran's biggest contributions: bringing the sociologist back into statistics. The author adds that Moran makes an excellent point; the typical statistics course is taught as if the techniques are not problematic at all, that they have no history and that their acceptance is universal.
Descriptors: Social Scientists, Graduate Students, Statistics, Required Courses, Sociology, Teaching Methods, Social Theories, Outcomes of Education
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Higher Education
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