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Case Study — World records as measures of senescence or randomness

Author(s): Carrie Diaz Eaton1, Carl Bergstrom2, Jevin West2

1. Bates College and QUBES 2. University of Washington

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Summary:
This is a project meant to accompany the Case Study that Carl Bergstrom, which uses R to explore whether declining track and field world record performance could be an artifact of sample size (less athletes competing in each age category).

Description

This is a project meant to accompany the Case Study that Carl Bergstrom, which uses R to explore whether declining track and field world record performance could be an artifact of sample size (less athletes competing in each age category).

This is written for RStudio, and includes much of the code for first time users, though does ask them to think about planning code, using loops and ggplot2. For stats outcomes, this addresses sampling from continuous distributions, thinking about randomness, thinking about how the maximum of a sample would change based on sample size, and then thinking about how the type of distribution assumed affects results.

The lab for 1st year students is typically complete within 80 minutes, assuming watching the video beforehand and in-class spending some time setting up the project ideas, occasionally regrouping to discuss results, and marking projects as complete.  Challenge exercises are included for motivated learners (or could be required for upper-level students).

Notes

Could easily be adopted for graduate level or for introductory with excel/spreadsheets.

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