Saturday, January 21, 2012

Lies & Statistics....

“There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics.” -Mark Twain

Statistically speaking, there are only two English majors (myself and one other gal) in my Statistics and Research Methods class and everyone else has had undergraduate or advanced courses in statistics. Why did I ever let Paige move to southern California? I need her here to tutor me!

When it comes to gathering and displaying data for articles, I’m pretty clueless. I realize I need some basics to read professional journals but I’m not planning to go into the research end of psychology. So learning to analyze all these metrics and understanding the tools of the statistics trade feels beyond my purview.

My class assignments have been a mumbo jumbo of mean and median, standard deviations, p values, z scored, kurtosis, confidence intervals (have I lost you yet?) Well, whether you are confused or not, I am!

The professor is delightful and makes class fun but the homework is a nightmare. But it’s one of those classes that’s required so I’ll be so relieved when statistics is behind me.

“Say you were standing with one foot in the oven and one foot in the ice bucket. According to the percentage people, you should be perfectly comfortable.” - Bobby Bragan