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Statistical knowledge is important to both statisticians and non-statisticians (Broers, 2006). It is, therefore, recommended that people from all disciplines are given basic skills in statistics.
For this reason, I pursued this course to obtain quantitative skills to be applied and improved on in several ways. In this regard, I hoped to obtain knowledge in designing of experiments, collection and analysis of data, interpretation of results as well as drawing of conclusions (Broers, 2006).
Today I can proudly say that my learning objectives were well met. I now have a clear understanding of statistical applications. I know how to collect, organize and describe data. I can apply measures of central tendency such as mean, mode and median in data description.
I can also use measures of dispersion such as standard deviation and variance to describe data. In addition, I have clear knowledge of normal distributions as well as the conditions to be met for a distribution to be considered normal (Broers, 2006).
Through this course, am able to determine a relationship between two sets of data. I can identify dependent and independent variables and the kind of relationship that exist between them. I can tell if one variable has a causal effect on the other. Furthermore, am able to identify positive, negative and minimal correlations (Broers, 2006).
In most cases, it is difficult to collect data on a whole population (Chance, 2002). In this regard, I have obtained necessary skills in sampling techniques. I have skills to analyze data from a sample and make conclusions regarding the entire population by using statistical probabilities and test of hypothesis.
In hypothesis testing, one tries to establish whether the outcomes of a certain study are due to chance or identifiable cause (Chance, 2002). Knowledge in application of significance level, critical value, degrees of freedom and p-value is used. One has to be able to formulate the null and the alternative hypotheses (Chance, 2002).
I am now in a position to use t-test to determine if there are statistically significant differences between two sets of data. In this regard, I understand the required assumptions for t-test to be applied. I have a clear understanding of analysis of variance (ANOVA), both one-way and two-way. I, however, feel that more practice in all these applications will help me perfect my understanding (Chance, 2002).
This course has given me a clear understanding of the role of statistics in life. Statistics is the most used research tool in medicine, education, psychology, business and economics, among other fields (Rumsey, 2002). It helps in shaping people’s choices in their daily lives. For example, statistical findings can give a clear understanding of implications of some behaviors such as smoking and lead to corrective measures.
I have always wanted to build a strong career in research. After taking this course, I have now made up my minds to major in statistics. I wish to have advanced skills in statistics which will enable me handle and analyze large and complex research problems. In this case, the knowledge I have already obtained will give me a head start.
The objectives I hoped to attain by pursuing this cause have been well achieved. Am now able to design experiments as well as collect, analyze and interpret data. I can apply this knowledge in real life situations and draw conclusions that will help find solutions to some problems.
However, this course has given me energy to pursue further knowledge in statistics. For this reason, I intend to major in statistics to be in a better position to handle more complex research problems.
Broers, N. J. (2006). Learning goals: the primacy of statistical knowledge. Maastricht: Maastricht University.
Chance, B. L. (2002). Components of statistical thinking and implications for instruction and assessment. Journal of Statistics Education, 10(3): 15-19.
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Rumsey, D. J. (2002). Statistical literacy as a goal for introductory statistics courses. Journal of Statistics Education, 10(3): 7-13