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Topic: Re: How much by hand
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James Lang

Posts: 48
Registered: 12/6/04
Re: How much by hand
Posted: Nov 3, 1996 10:48 PM
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I'm glad you raised this question. I have been thinking about it also. It
seems to me that the important idea is how the mean and SD are related to
the sketch of a normal curve. I have my students make a sketch and mark
the axis with mu and mu +/- a couple SD. Although I don't have learning
theory to back me up I think that this is important to do by hand. I also
think that the z-score concept is important to do by hand because it is the
test statistic used later in the course when you discuss significance
tests. Doing this by hand in both places in the course I think helps the
student make these connections. I don't think it is important to look up
areas in the table or manipulate the table area to get the desired area.
Based on these opinions I would want the students be able to make a normal
curve sketch and show how to calculate the z-score but then use the
calculator to get the area. So I would be using the calculator like an
electronic table.

This is of course just one person's opinion. Hopefully your question will
get more responses.

James Lang
Valencia Community College

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