USCOTS 2007 Program SOCR

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SOCR News, Events & Announcements - USCOTS 2007 SOCR Breakout Session

Session Title

Teaching and Learning Statistics with Statistics Online Computational Resources (SOCR)


Breakout Sessions #2, Thursday 05/17/07, 3:00-4:20 PM

Session Leaders


We will introduce the SOCR resource, describe the pedagogical utilization of the SOCR tools, conduct interactive activities to demonstrate their in-class use and introduce our collaborative working environment for development and exchange of tools and instructional materials.


In this session, participants will be directly involved in activities from the Statistics Online Computational Resources (SOCR), in the same way these are introduced in our Introductory Statistics and Probability classes. Participants will also learn about the available SOCR tools, how to use them and how to contribute to these activities using the SOCR Wiki collaborative environment. All of the SOCR resources are dynamic and are readily adaptable as the activities for the specific classrooms. The SOCR goals are to provide excellent science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education for all undergraduate students and to involve instructors of diverse backgrounds in exchange ideas and joint development of educational materials. We design and extend the SOCR framework so that it allows instructors to custom-design activities and tools that fit their specific course, student population and topics covered.

The efforts of the SOCR resource are to develop the foundation of tools and instances of instructional activities. These include open-source Java applets, computational probability and statistics Java library, class notes and collaborative activities. This infrastructure enables educators to go to the next level in information technology based instruction.


  • SOCR Interface: The main objective of SOCR is to offer a homogeneous interface for online activities appropriate for the Introductory Statistics Course, Introductory Probability course and other advanced Statistics courses that rely on hands on demonstrations and simulation to illustrate Statistical concepts. A common portal for all SOCR activities is very important to minimize the amount of time that students have to spend learning the technology. SOCR materials and activities have received recognitions from several educational technology-based initiatives and digital libraries.
  • SOCR Studies and Findings: SOCR has been tested in the classroom on several occasions. Most recently with an experimental study we conducted led us to conclude that using SOCR for the teaching of Introductory Statistics and Probability was effective (Dinov, Sanchez and Christou, 2006). More testing of the effectiveness of SOCR in undergraduate teaching is currently underway at UCLA during the 2006-2007 academic year. The dependence of students’ performance in the SOCR-based courses will be studied as a function of their attitudes towards the subject, their learning styles and other student demographics. In this session, we propose to provide hands-on experience on how to use the SOCR resources in the best possible way to achieve the best learning outcomes for different groups of students.
  • Browsing the SOCR Resources: Interactive Hyperbolic Utility for Searching, Browsing and Using the SOCR Resources

SOCR USCOTS Breakout Session Agenda

SOCR Overview (10 min)

Ivo Dinov: SOCR Overview

Distributions Activity (15+5 min)

Nicolas Christou: Explore relations between Distributions, a part of the SOCR Distribution Activity shows how to interact with the SOCR Distributions to visualize the areas of interest and obtain probabilities and critical values for over 50+ distinct distributions.

Central Limit Theorem Activity (15+5 min)

Ivo Dinov: The Central Limit Theorem (CLT) Activity illustrates the properties of the sampling distribution of the sample average and serves to motivate and build students’ intuition.

Practice Activity 1: Discrete Distributions (10 min)

Nicolas Christou: Complete this SOCR Discrete Distributions Activity

Practice Activity 2: Birthday Activity (10 min)

Juana Sanchez: Birthday Experiment.

Practice Activity 2: Bivariate Activity (10 min)

Juana Sanchez: Bivariate Activity.

Other Interesting Activities

Auxiliary resources

Pictures from this Event

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