Beister's Stats Lab (Use Carefully)

Beister's Stats Lab (Use Carefully) - Statistics and...

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Statistics and Probability Laboratory Nathanael Biester Biology 201 September 19, 2008 10:00 a.m.
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Introduction: Statistics is a concept that completely saturates our world and its events. Events can appear as though they have no correlation, mathematical values that seem not to have order. Most people would understand statistics to be a collection of numbers, such as points scored by their favorite player, the chance of there being rain, or what the odds are in a gamble. Statistics is quite useless if we can’t make good choices based on its application in the real world. It is the branch of mathematics that deals with the data-based decision making (McGhee). Statistics can help researchers design experiments and interpret the data they collect. Statisticians mainly rely on three related principles. The use of data and its analysis includes the gathering, display and summarization of data. Probability is the quantification of chance using the gathered data. Statistical inference is the science of drawing statistical conclusions from specific data, based on probability (Gonick & Smith). Probability is important when forming inferences about the data, the inferences are usually based on samples. In these areas we work with incomplete information, and not the entire picture. Examples of this would be the samples taken out of a population, since it could be difficult to obtain all individuals for gathering data. Chance variations and errors in measurement can muddy the data we have collected through samples (McGhee). Probability helps us describe how samples are related to a population and provide the amount of certainty in the accuracy of our data in a numerical way. Methods and Materials: A) Coin Tosses Our group consisted of Esperanza Flores, Emmie Daly, Sophia Houtzer, and Nathanael Biester. In the first three models, we used coin tosses, flipped by Nathanael. Ten, hundred,
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and four hundred tosses were used. Nathanael used a regular United States quarter, placed it on his thumb, and flicked it into the air at about one to one and a half feet. He then caught it with his right hand, and flipped the coin onto his left forearm. Tosses were rejected if the he failed to catch the coin or the coin was flipped slowly enough for the rotations to be followed by eye. The rest of the group recorded the data, and at the end of the experiment the data was shared with the four groups in the Biology 201 10:00 a.m. class in order to gain the information for the 400 toss experiment. A chi square test with the probability threshold at α=0.5 was used for the analysis of the information because we dealt with nominal data. B) Genetic Crosses Data were provided by the instructor. In two different situations a farmer buys seed from dealer, and the resulting plants’ genotype is compared to the expected genotype with the use of a chi square test, probability threshold at α=0.5. The phenotypes for the 100 seed experiment should have had a 3:1 green to yellow ratio, the 250 seed experiment had a
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Beister's Stats Lab (Use Carefully) - Statistics and...

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