The Student-As-a-Customer Model Will Be the End of Academia

More and more colleges and universities are treating students as customers, showing them how to push a button or fill in a formula without teaching them how to think and solve problems. I might be old school, but I’d rather train and mentor my future colleagues instead of just showing students how to push a button.

One-Way ANOVA Analyses, by Hand and in R

A student asked for help with a statistical analysis the other night, and I was happy to help. However, he threw me a curveball when he told me he needed to conduct an ANOVA test using only summary data. That is, all he had was the table of results (from a publication) and not the data. Doing an ANOVA by…

When the Numbers Don’t Say What You Think They Say

Sometimes it’s possible to see some numbers and think that there is some sort of pattern or association there. Then we do the math and it turns out that what we saw was observed just by chance. Such is the case with this one observation seen by an anti-vaccine friendly pediatrician.

Chalkboard with the letters ABC written on it

The School Subjects You Need to Know

What is the most basic thing a society needs to thrive? What does my daughter need to be successful? As it turns out, it’s not that difficult to have a well trained and well educated society. You just need good schools.

“Talk Less. Smile More. Don’t Let Them Know What You’re Against or What You’re For.”

Literature and the arts have a lot of lessons to teach us about life and how we should (or could) live. I recently listened to the soundtrack to the play about Alexander Hamilton’s life, and the lessons were very interesting. Talk less, smile more? Maybe. But you also need to speak up against injustice. You need to stand for something, or you’ll fall for almost anything.

A Brief History of Measles

Measles has been plaguing humanity since around the 12th Century AD. It used to be that the lack of medical care and a vaccine were what caused the epidemics of measles. Today, the causes are mostly due to the human condition: to believing myths, spreading misinformation, inequalities in the delivery of healthcare and public health services, and the willingness of some people to make a buck off the fears of those who are not equipped to know better.