A ROUND We Go Again

André Michelle Lubecke
Lander College
Greenwood, SC

Newsletter for the Section on Statistical Education
Volume 8, Number 1 (Winter 2002)

Even before the Joint Statistics Meetings were over in Atlanta, work was being done on those scheduled for August 2002 in New York City and for August 2003 in San Francisco. My task for the 2002 meetings is to organize the Roundtable Luncheons for the Section on Statistical Education.

To date, I have a number of very interesting suggestions for these informal lunchtime discussions. By the time you read this article, I may have all the ideas and leaders that can be accommodated in New York City. However, do not let that stop you from contacting me and volunteering to lead a roundtable discussion on your topic of interest. I would love to have an overflow list to pass on to the next Program Chair Elect.

Although not all of these ideas have firm commitments at this point in time, you may find the following topics in the line-up next summer: How to get Students to Use their Textbook; Choosing a Textbook for a Second Course in Statistics; Interesting Tidbits from the History of Statistics; Getting Students to See the Big Ideas; Qualitative Research - A Lunchtime Primer; On-line Courses and Tools. And, back by popular demand (because it sold out in Atlanta), Creating and Sustaining an Undergraduate Statistics Minor or Concentration.

For those of you who have never attended a Roundtable Luncheon, seriously consider doing so. They provide an easy way to meet, engage in conversation, and exchange ideas with some of the best educators in the field. Sometimes, you get an unexpected bonus as people whose work you have appreciated and admired show up as fellow attendees at the Roundtable you have selected or at the one that you are leading!

And now a request for your participation in an unofficial "public" opinion poll: Two items concerning the Roundtable Luncheons were discussed in business meetings I attended in Atlanta. One concerned the expense of the luncheons and the other the scheduling of them.

Particularly when the meetings are held in cities where living expenses are high, there was concern that the cost of the luncheons was the deciding factor for someone considering participation. A suggestion was made that perhaps costs could be reduced by negotiating with the hosting hotel to provide facilities and a "box lunch" rather than a lunch that required a full wait-staff.

The other suggestion was to not have all the luncheons sponsored by a Section fall on the same day. This would allow someone to attend more than one luncheon and also allow a leader of one luncheon to participate in another.

If you have an opinion on either of these items, or if you would like to offer your services as a Roundtable Luncheon leader in either New York City or in a subsequent year, please e-mail me at alubecke@lander.edu.

One more item concerning the luncheons: there is a limit of 10 on the number at each table. Two things may prevent you from being able to attend the luncheon of your choice: 1) the luncheon is sold out; 2) luncheon tickets are not sold after 2pm on the day preceding the lunch and you arrive too late to purchase one. Therefore, if you see a luncheon topic of particular interest, my advice is to register early! I promise to remind you of this again when I have a firm list of next summer's luncheons.

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