The Mathematics Enthusiast






Statistics is taught within a diverse array of disciplines and degree programs at university. In recent research we investigated international educators’ ideas about teaching and learning ‘service’ statistics. This paper investigates what these educators think are important attributes, knowledge and skills for learners and teachers of statistics. Results show that educators are in agreement about qualities of ‘good’ statistics students, such as curiosity and critical thinking. An emerging issue was the role mathematics plays in learning statistics as a service subject with some academics postulating mathematics as the basis of statistical learning, others proposing it has limited or little importance in learning service statistics or even that it presents obstacles, detrimental to students’ statistical thinking. The features of statistics teachers that were highlighted in the data were knowledge of statistics and its applications, empathy with students and knowledge about teaching and enthusiasm for it. Respondents had practical suggestions on how to help students become competent learners of statistics. We extend a theoretical framework for synthesizing the findings.

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