ISLP/IASE’s Statistical Literacy Competition in Northern Portugal a Success

Juana Sanchez

Newsletter for the Section on Statistical Education
Volume 12, Number 2 (Fall 2007)

The winners of the Statistical Literacy Competition, organized by the International Statistical Literacy Project of the IASE in Schools in Northern Portugal, received their awards from Chris Wild, past president of the IASE, on August 18, 2008, at the University do Minho, Guimarães, Portugal. We can see in the pictures below the high school winning team (left) and the winning team from middle school (right).

Shown in each of the pictures from left to right are: Juana Sanchez, Director of the ISLP, the winning team, Chris Wild and Bruno de Sousa, from U. do Minho. The teams came from Escola Secundària de Caldas das Taipas and Escola EB2,3 de Valença do Minho, respectively. They received as prizes games provided by the sponsor APM (Mathematics Teachers Association of Portugal), an ISI watch, a $100 check to cover expenses of their travel to Guimarães for the final and travel to the local site where they competed in the premilinary games, and a Certificate. In addition to these prizes, these students will have expenses covered to travel to compete in the International Competition. The teachers of the two teams received SAS JMP and Fathom awards, respectively, and will also receive support to attend the International Competition.

There was also a second prize awarded to teams from Escola Secundària/3 Senhora de Hora and Escola EB2,3 de Valença do Minho, respectively. They also received a $50 check to cover expenses, an ISI watch and games.

In the preliminary games in the different towns, Valença do Minho, Porto and Guimarães, the students received small prizes provided by sponsors Statistics Portugal (INE), Australian Bureau of Statistics, APM, U. do Minho and the DREN (North Portugal Regional Education Authority). The students also heard inspiring presentations by statisticians who gave them an overview of the use of statistics in everyday life and career opportunities in statistics. Not missing was the food and sodas.

The game was similar to the game "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?" but called "Who Wants to be Statistically Literate?" Most questions for the games came from Portuguese sources, while others were translated from other sources in the ISLP web page. A typical format of the game was that a U. do Minho graduate student would read the questions to the students, while the question was projected by the data projector. The teams then would discuss the answer or use one of the four life lines (phone a friend, internet, ask the audience or eliminate two answers). Another U. do Minho graduate student would keep track of the punctuation and help students with the life lines.

Other sponsors were the UCLA Department of Statistics and SOCR. We cannot thank enough Pedro Campos of Statistics Portugal, Maria Manuel da Silva Nascimento of UTAD and APM, Bruno de Sousa of U. do Minho and all our sponsors for their help in making the competition possible.

The ISLP web page contains a link to a very detailed description of the competition at the different locations in North Portugal and many photos. The games that the students did can also be found there. While browsing there, check the new International Competition.

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