If students don’t believe that learning statistics is a worthwhile adventure, will they try? Yet, we all know students are bombarded with messages that statistics are hard, incomprehensible, mysterious, or just plain wrong. Students are well aware of the inaccurate, though oft stated comment that you can say whatever you want with statistics. My response is not if you know to use and interpret statistics.

So, how can we counteract the big push against the need for students to learn statistics.

Tell students the truth! Applied statistics is sexy!

I have comprised a few short articles and clips that characterize that statistics jobs are “sexy” and in demand.

If you have other resources, please let me know, and I’ll add them to the list.

TED Talk by Arthur Benjamin http://www.ted.com/talks/arthur_benjamin_s_formula_for_changing_math_education.html

For Today’s Graduate Just One Word: Statistics (NY Times)

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/06/technology/06stats.html

Why Math and Statistics are Sexy

http://theappslab.com/2012/02/17/why-math-and-statistics-are-sexy/

Hal Varian’s “Sexy Job”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D4FQsYTbLoI

Now, what we need is a set of graduate students to pull together a video with statistics mocking the song, “I’m sexy and I know it.” It’s only a matter of time until someone creates such a video. When you do (or if you see it), please let me know.

I’m going to end with a TED Talk that I found it both interesting and funny http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Totz8aa2Gg&feature=related that further demonstrates … we all need to understand statistics and how it can be used, lest someone takes us down some incredible path, far from where we should be going.

Happy calculating!

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