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Presentation 1B3. What Educated Citizens Should Know About Statistics and Probability

Jessica Utts (USA)


Presentation Abstract
Statistical studies and information are presented almost daily in most major newspapers. If someone has a medical problem, there is likely to be a wealth of information on the Internet that discusses studies related to that problem. Financial decisions are often made based on examining statistical information. Stories of "amazing coincidences" make headlines, even when they are not justified. In all of these cases, educated citizens should be familiar with some basic ideas and misconceptions that will help them interpret the information wisely. The authors of news articles often misinterpret studies, and it is even more common that headlines convey erroneous information. Using numerous examples, this talk will cover seven common misinterpretations of statistical information.


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