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modelproj-1

# modelproj-1 - Model Project Number 1 Trivial Pursuit of...

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Model Project Number 1: Trivial Pursuit of Statistics Jessica Cottreau Picture this, you and a few people are sitting around and decide to play a friendly game of Trivial Pursuit . Everything is going well, everyone is having a good time. Then you are faced with a question for a piece of pie, “Who placed the first telephone call to the moon?” Your friend looks at the back of the card, gazes at the answer, and annoyingly says, “That’s easy.” You really do not know the answer, so you choose an answer from the sea of names swimming in your head. Uunfortunately it was not the right answer and your friend with the card does not attempt to conceal your momentary idiocy, instead yells out “Richard Nixon” in disbelief. But did your friend really know the answer? It is possible that your friend truly knew the answer to the question before he or she saw the answer, but it is also possible that your friend fell victim to the “I knew it all along” effect. The= “I knew it all along” effect is a psychologically researched effect that states that a person tends to overestimate his or her knowledge on a subject when the answers are presented. Spurred by my observations of this effect while playing Trivial Pursuit , I decided to test these observations statistically. I began my study by handpicking five questions from Parker Brother’s Trivial Pursuit Genus IV board game. One question was selected from the People & Places , Arts & Entertainment , History , Science & Nature , and Sports & Leisure categories. The Wild Card category was left out to avoid two questions on the same topic. Two question sheets were then designed, one with the five questions, and the other with the questions followed by the answers. After each question set the participant is asked whether the questions were easy or difficult. Treatment 1–no answers Answer the following questions in your head, you do not need to write the answers down. 1. Who directed Vertigo in 1958? 2. What African republic’s name was inspired by its thriving elephant tusk trade? 3. Who placed the first telephone call to the moon? 4. What isn’t found in liquid form on any other planet but earth? 5. Who was involved as a player or coach in three super bowls with the Cowboys, two with the Eagles and one with the Bears? After answering these questions did you find them easy or difficult? Put a check next to one of the following statements. They were easy-had difficulty with 0-2 of the questions. They were difficult-had difficulty with 3-5 of the questions. Treatment 2–answers Answer the following questions in your head, the answers are recorded after each question. 1

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1. Who directed Vertigo in 1958? Alfred Hitchcock. 2. What African republic’s name was inspired by its thriving elephant tusk trade? Ivory Coast.
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