Scientific Program > Topic 6 > Session 6B >
Presentation 6B4. How Students Experience Learning Statistics and Teaching

Peter Petocz (Australia)
Anna Reid (Australia)


Presentation Abstract
It is obvious that students sitting in the same statistics classroom learn different things, and that they view the role of the statistics lecturer in different ways. In this paper, we report on empirical research about students' conceptions of learning statistics, their expectations of their lecturer, and the relationship between them. The research is based on a series of interviews, analyzed using a qualitative methodology, with first and third year statistics students studying for a mathematics degree. These interviews showed that students expressed a range of conceptions of learning in statistics, some of them limiting to their study of statistics, others expanding their view of statistics. These conceptions were related to a range of ways in which students expected their lecturers to support their learning. Research focusing on these areas is important to teachers as it gives them vital information for the development of the total learning environment. It allows teachers to help students develop their understanding of statistics from limited and fragmented conceptions towards more holistic and expansive views. Looking at what students expect of teachers, in conjunction with their conceptions of their own learning, provides an opportunity for teachers to develop teaching practices that challenge students to move towards more integrated or holistic ways of viewing statistics.


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