Statistics Institute Overview

Instructor: Chris Olsen

Dates: July 10 - July 13, 2023 (Monday-Thursday)

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Course Description

The AP® Statistics Course and Exam Description, revised in 2019, goes beyond a mere “description” of the course; it offers a sound framework and resources for building quality instruction. A bit of new content was added to the course in 2019, along with a veritable torrent of resources for teachers. The CED is packaged into nine units, each with a wealth of specificity and detail about what your students will be expected to know and do. We will review the Big Ideas and the specific Skills students will need to succeed in AP® Statistics and provide information about the structure of the AP® Statistics exam and the rubrics used to evaluate student responses. 

We will focus on statistics as an active endeavor and present activities that will engage your students and get them “out of their seats.” The use of technology -- graphing calculators, and statistical software -- will be stressed throughout the week. Communication – presenting an effective argument about interpreting data -- is an essential part of doing and teaching statistics; a large part of our time together will be in discussion and interpretation, not me pontificating! The sequence of statistical topics, and approximate allocation of time follows below. Generally, we will focus more on the content and teaching of the course early in the week, and more on the exam and exam issues as we march through the week.

About the Instructor

Chris Olsen is a past member (twice) of the AP® Statistics Test Development Committee and recently joined the 15-year club of serving as a table leader and question leader for the AP® Statistics exam. After teaching statistics at George Washington High School in Cedar Rapids, IA, for over 25 years, and AP® Statistics from its inception until 2007, he passed the baton.

For the past nine years Chris has enjoyed the role of assistant professor of mathematics and statistics at Grinnell College, teaching calculus, experimental design, and applied statistics classes. (This is what he thinks of as his golden years of retirement?!?!?). Chris spent his undergraduate years at Iowa State University majoring in mathematics and philosophy; in his graduate work at the University of Iowa he concentrated on statistics, computer programming, psychometrics, and test development.    

Chris has been involved nationally and internationally in workshops and conferences, mostly relating to statistics, for over 35 years. He has reviewed materials for The Mathematics Teacher, the AP® Central web site, The American Statistician, and the Journal of the American Statistical Association. Chris is also on the editorial board of the Teaching Statistics journal. He is a co-author, with Roxy Peck and Tom Short, of the Introduction to Statistics and Data Analysis, now in its 6th edition, and Statistics: Learning from Data, now in its 2nd (updated) edition.  

Current projects involve moderating the AP® Statistics Teacher Community and writing computer programs to support the teaching of AP® Statistics. 

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