Me thinks the good doctor from Harvard may have an inflated opinion of himself and his work. People who are truly educated and enlightened do not thumb their noses at other people's efforts but, rather, support and encourage them. Perhaps the rarified air of the esteemed Cambridge institution has diluted his ability to think clearly. I find those kind of people the "most boring of all."
We need to be thankful for the support of those truly educated and enlightened individuals like Dr. Alan Rossman, Dr. Richard Schaeffer, Dr. Beth Chance, Dr. Christine Franklin, Dr. Brad Hartlaub, et. al. to name just a very few, who realize the importance of this work.
And finally, we must never forget to mention the efforts of Dr. Christopher Olsen, the sage of the cornbelt and all things midwestern. At least his feet are on the ground, muddy or snowy as that may be, and not flitting about in some ether, or whatever it is that they call that New England air.
>>> "David Bee" <firstname.lastname@example.org> 12/24/09 8:44 AM >>> Michael and Others:
But let's for a moment, grant his statement as true, and investigate why it might be. AP Stats has been growing tremendously since its inception. Many math teachers begin teaching AP Stats with little or no real background in statistics, and when thrown into this subject, spend one to several years floundering about, and presenting "the most boring class ever" (by the way, I'm using my own background as the model here, I'm sure not all parts apply to all AP Stats teachers). Why did they not have a good background in Statistics? Because the intro class they took (in college) was the most boring math class ever.
Wrt the last sentence above, one can't imagine a math-stat course being the most boring math class. For those who've been reading my Today's Birthday postings[a big one today(Dec 24th) about the founder of Harvard's Stat Dept], one point occasionally made was that one big reason for the belated interest in Stat by those with BA/BS degrees in Math is that during the first 80-100 years of the twentieth century there was a deep anti-Stat attitude among most in most Math departments. (David Salsburg, in at least one portion of LTT, discussed this.) Anecdotally, I experienced this while getting bachelor's and master's degrees in Math-Ed (and so went for a second MS in Stat...;^)), and truly believe what I've read about an anti-Stat attitude being prevalent in math departments for a long time.
-- David Bee
PS: Some colleges sans Stat departments have formed Stat groups within their Math departments [Stat sub-department?] (I believe Syracuse Univ has had one for a long time), and believe more such groups will result as a result of the APStat course...