The Topic:
Statistics & Probability

Easier - A statistic is a fact or piece of information that is expressed as a number or percentage. The facts and figures that are collected and examined for information on a given subject are statistics. Probability is the likelihood of something happening or being true.
Harder - Statistics is a set of methods used to collect and analyze data. Those statistical methods help people identify, study, and solve a variety of problems. Statistics help people make good decisions about uncertain situations. Probability is used to describe events that do not occur with certainty.
People in varied occupations use statistics. Health professionals use statistical methods to determine whether a specific drug or procedure is useful in the treatment of medical problems. Weather forecasters use statistics to more accurately predict the weather. Engineers use statistics to benchmark standards for product safety and quality. Scientists employ statistical methods to design effective experiments. Economists apply statistical techniques in predicting future economic trends.
Statisticians analyze data in two varying ways: exploratory methods and confirmatory methods. Exploratory methods are used to analyze what the data seem to be saying. These exploratory methods often involve computing averages or percentages and displaying the data on some type of graph. Confirmatory methods apply ideas from probability theory in an attempt to answer specific questions.
Introduction to Descriptive Statistics
Designed for use in a classroom setting, this website uses both hands-on and 'virtual' activities to develop and establish the basic concepts of descriptive statistics.
Other Introductory Statistics Sites:
2) Animated Statistics Demonstrations (Allow time to load)
3) Guide to Basic Laboratory Statistics (Advanced/college level)
4) Meet Stanley Statistician from (Grades 5-7) United States Department of
Agriculture (USDA)
5) Statistical Data Analysis: Prove It with Statistics (Advanced/college level)
6) Statistical Instruction Internet Palette (SIIP)
7) Statistics Tutorials by A. Dix
Introductory Statistics and Elementary Statistics from Weiss
This website by the publisher of two well-known statistics textbooks has activities that follow instruction chapter by chapter.
Other Online Instruction Websites:
2) Electronic Statistics Textbook from StatSoft, Inc.
3) HyperStat Online (Online book & tutorial) by D.M. Lane
4) Introductory Statistics: Concepts, Models, and Applications by D.W. Stockburger,
Southwest Missouri State University
5) New View of Statistics by W.G. Hopkins
6) Social Science Reasoning Using Statistics!
7) Statistics: The Study of Stability in Variation from UCLA
8) SticiGui: Statistics Tools for Internet and Classroom Instruction with a Graphical User
Interface by P.B. Stark
9) Surfstat Australia
Probability by A. Bogomolny
This is the site of a brief introductory history on probability. Scroll to the bottom of the page for lots of activities.
Related Websites on Probability:
2) Percent and Probability from Math League
3) Playing to Win from Math in Daily Life, Annenberg/CPB
4) Probability & Statistics Index (Advanced/college level)
5) Probability Net
Probability and Statistics from the Math Forum
This comprehensive math website connects to tons of resources, activities, and ideas related to probability and statistics.
Related Websites:
2) Probability and Statistics by J. Walker from RetroPsychoKinesis Project
After visiting several of the websites, complete one or more of the following activities.
Complete Some Online Statistics Activities. You will find lots of activities at CUWU Statistics Program. Here you can perform some simple data analyses, complete simulations of drawing tickets out of a box, play 'Monty Hall,' draw poker and see probable winning hands, and more. Teachers can set up a group so that your students can compete among themselves!
Complete Some Probability Activities. Follow the directions found at Roll-O Bingo (Grades 4-7), Shake, Rattle, and Roll - A Bean Game (Grades 4-7) from CanTeach, Male Bears Probability, or Its Not Fair!: She Always Wins from the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. Others may want to try one or more of the four similar online probability simulations at Monty Hall, 3 Doors, Monty Hall, Monty Hall Puzzler from CarTalk, and Now Playing Let's Make A Deal. Another online probability interaction can be found at Area Probability (Throw Darts!). Manipulate the size of the circle and the rectangle to explore the probability that a dart thrown into the rectangle will land in the circle. You can also click on the icons below the graph to see a table of your results. Another site that advanced learners might try is The Birthday Problem. Finally, you can find several challenging problems at Probability in My Garden.
Learn and Experiment. Visit Games of Chance and proceed through the 8 modules. Then conduct the related experiments.
Complete A Statistics / Probability WebQuest. Adapt or follow the procedures found at one or more of the following webQuest sites:
1) Are You Ready For Some Football?
2) Atlantic Coast Conference Basketball: Comparing Statistics
3) Geometry Lesson On Probability (Grades 9-12) by D. Hash
4) Introduction to Probability (Advanced/college level) by J. Matovina
5) It's a Thrill: Roller Coaster Statistics by A. Swick
6) Let's Make A Deal Math: The Study of Probability (Grade 6) by L.D. Resch
7) March Madness (Grades 6-8)
8) Probability: Experimental vs. Theoretical (Grades 9-12) by L.L. King
9) Take Me Out to the Ball Game (Grades 9-12) by S. Hallar
10) Major Leagues
11) Titanic: What Can Numbers Tell Us About Her Fatal Voyage? (Grades 8-12) by T. Atkins
& B. McManus
12) Why on Earth Am I Taking Statistics? (Advanced / college level) by K. Anglin
Create A Stats Quote Poster. Visit the Statistical Quote of the Day site. Then create a poster that illustrates and promotes the quote's concept or ideas. You may want to visit for a week, and then pick the best.
Read Some Statistics Jokes. You can find them at the Internet Gallery of Statistics Jokes by G. Ramseyer. Now see if you can write a statistics joke! Share it.
Websites By Kids For Kids
Countnow (1999 ThinkQuest Internet Challenge)
This site looks at statistics on many topics of interest - - the flood of numbers available on subjects like life expectancy, global population, or traffic are counted in a different way.
Learning Statistics (2001 ThinkQuest Internet Challenge)
This website focuses on the statistical analysis required in scientific research, including descriptive statistics, parametric and non-parametric significance tests, and correlation/regression.
Probability Central (1997 ThinkQuest Internet Challenge)
This site contains a simple five-part introduction to basic probability theory with a review quiz. Topics covered include probability properties, models, and rules. A poker game illustrates the laws of probability in a real-life situation, the probability calculator gives the likelihood of two different events both happening or either happening at the same time, and there are also links to related sites.
Probability Plaza (2000 ThinkQuest Internet Challenge)
Learn about probability - from the most basic to advanced topics. Nate, the genius, will help you as you learn data analysis, combinatorics, real-world probability applications, and more through interesting, fun, challenging exercises.
Statistics (Section of Seeing Is Believing, 1997 ThinkQuest Internet Challenge)
This project houses a great online statistics tutorial. Learn about statistical representations of data (frequency distributions, graphs, percentiles); statistical measures of data (central tendency, variation); probability concepts; random variables; discrete variables and more.
More Websites for Stats and Probability
Charts & Graphs from eduScapes 42eXplore
Find lots of resources and activities on charts and graphs at this companion project site.
Related Website:
2) Meet Pie Chart Pam from United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)
Data and Story Library (DASL)
'Dazzle' is an online library of data files and stories that illustrate the use of basic statistics methods.
Internet Glossary of Statistical Terms from the Animated Software Company
If there are statistical words you do not understand, find it in this alphabetical listing and click for the definition/explanation.
Simple Interactive Statistical Analysis
Here is a collection of procedures for performing simple statistical calculations online, using HTML forms at this site.
Other Online Stats Calculation Sites:
2) Descriptive Statistics
3) Descriptive Statistics from iFigure
4) Interactive Statistical Calculation Pages
Statistics & Probability Letters (Advanced/college level) from Elsevier Science
This is the website for an international journal covering all fields of statistics and probability, and providing an outlet for rapid publication of short communications in the field.
Other Online Journals for Statistics & Probability:
2) Chance
3) Journal of Statistics Education
4) Probability and Statistics Journals on the Web (Links-site)
Statistics On the Web by C. Helberg
This massive links-site connects to tons of statistics resources.
Another Huge Links-site:
2) Links Related to Statistics Education by J. Puranen
This website provides a system for distributing statistical software, data sets, and information online.
Some Data Sources
Baseball Stats from CNN/Sports Illustrated
Bureau of Labor Statistics
Data and Statistics from Center for Disease Control
Demography & Population Resources/Links at Population Studies and Training Center, Brown University
Emerging 21st Century Family from The National Opinion Research Center
Facts & Figures at International Tennis Federation
Federal Interagency Forum on Child and Family Statistics
Hockey Statistics Archive at Internet Hockey Database
KidsCount at The Annie E. Casey Foundation
Monitoring the Future: A Continuing Study of American Youth
National Center for Education Statistics
National Center for Health Statistics
National Data Analysis System from Child Welfare League of America
National Football League Stats
National Statistics from the United Kingdom
Player Stats from Baseball Almanac
Real Time Data Sites (Links-site) from Stevens Institute of Technology
Social Statistics Briefing Room from the Whitehouse
Social Science Information Gateway (SOIG)
Sociometrics Data and Instrument Archives
Statistical Briefing Book at Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, U.S. Department of Justice
Statistical Resources on the Web / Health from Document Center, University of Michigan
Statistics from National Basketball Association
Statistics from Service Industries Trends
Stats from National Hockey League
Uniform Crime Reports from Federal Bureau of Investigation
U.S. Census Bureau
Websites For Teachers
Chance by J.L, Snell, P. Doyle, J. Garfield, T. Moore, B. Peterson, and N. Shah
This site contains materials to help teach a "Chance" course, a quantitative literacy course.
Chi-Square by A. Patel
This amusing lesson leads to understanding statistical terms such as expectation, significance, and chi-square. The lesson requires the Excel software program.
Data Analysis and Probability (Grades 9-12)
Here is a list of resources in Data Analysis and Probability including lessons and useful data sets.
Images for Instruction in Probability and Statistics from R.L. Sleight.
These images were selected as ones especially useful in statistics and probability. You can use these for instructional presentations and webpage development.
Related Website:
2) Probability/Statistics Object Library
Running to Conclusions (Grades 10-12) by E. Malczewski
This online lesson activity focuses on exponential fit using statistical methods of analysis.
Laws of Probability: Mutually ExclusivevsMutually Inclusive Draws or Playing the Odd’s (Grades 8-16) by M.A. Siddiq
This lesson is designed to show students how to cut down the odds or reduce the probabilities of losing by using fractions and decimals.
Other Probability Lessons:
2) Phenomenological Probability (Grades 6-8) by R. Foote
3) Probability (Grades 6-8) by A. Timbers
4) Probability (Grades 5-8) by S. Reed
5) Probability by E. Turner
6) Probability by L. Willis Moss
7) Probability of Childhood Games (Grades 6-8) by R. Foote
Linear Regression: Statistical Analysis (Grades 10-12) by A. McCall and I. Mohamed
This lesson asks learners to analyze paired data by first finding means, variances, standard deviations,and covariance. Then they use these statistical measures to find the best fitting line for the set of data and the correlation coefficient of the two variables. This lesson plan includes two data sets: cigarette and species data.
Mean, Median, Mode, Etc. (Grades 4-12) by C. Goldwater
The main objective of this mini-teach is to have students generate their own data and then analyze their information. Some of the ideas that could taught are mean, mode, and median, histogram, bar and circle graph, and probability.
Related Lesson Plans:
2) Averaging by S. Thomas (Grade 6)
3) Paper Toss Shootout (Grade 8) by E.R. Justice
4) Statistics of Mars by W.L. Lilly
Probability from Math Goodies
Here are a series of lessons and activities for the study of probability.
charts & graphs
raw data
random event
improve the odds
lessen the odds
probability theory
middle point
Bernoulli trial
polls & surveys
binomial distribution
standard deviation
data analysis
central tendency
non parametric
descriptive statistics
normal distribution
Created by Annette Lamb and Larry Johnson, 3/02.