Reading Discussion: Putting Statistics to Work

In this discussion, you will share your thoughts and reactions to the weeks readings by engaging in conversation around a set of prompts. You should discuss at least 2 of the prompts in a meaningful way and contribute at least 3 total posts. You may also discuss any general thoughts or questions about this weeks reading and assignments. As this discussion is intended to be a conversation, try to write posts that respond to others as well as contribute new ideas.

Some general guidelines for online discussion forum netiquette (Links to an external site.) from Peter Connor can be found here. The prompts for this week are as follows:

What are some different ways to describe the variation of a data set? Give examples of when each might be appropriate.
How is a percentile different from a percentage? For example, You scored in the 85th percentile on the SAT vs. You scored an 85% on your science test.
How does the idea of statistical significance apply to the question of whether results from a sample can be generalized to conclusions about a population? Explain.
This comic from XKCD (Links to an external site.) is based on the idea of statistical significance. Explain the joke. Whats the problem with the conclusion they published in the newspaper?

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