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Data on the Run: Data and Statistical Sources for Reference and Instruction: Think Like an Instructor

ACRL Preconference Workshop, April 10th, 2013

Data in Library Instruction

Statistical Literacy

Student Learning Outcomes

Activity 1: Evaluating Statistics (15 minutes)

This activity is estimate to take 10-15 minutes.

  • Ask students to pick a table from USA Today Snapshots or NationMaster and answer these questions.
  • Authority: Who is the author? What are their qualifications?
  • Audience: Who is the intended audience?
  • Content: Are they accurate? Can they be verified?
  • Coverage: What is the population or sample size?
  • Currency: What is the date of the data? Purpose: Why was the information collected?
  • Watch "Colbert evaluates USA Today"

Activity 2: Examining Religion (30-45 minutes)

This activity is estimated to take 30-45 minutes.

  • Ask students to choose a religious congregation using ARDA
  • Ask students to compare their religious congregation in different states and ask:
    • Does anything surprise you about the religious groups you chose?
    • What differences did you see between the two states?
    • What might explain those differences or commonalities.
  • Ask students to look up information in the secondary literature about their congregation.