Best-selling author to keynote BGSU Day of Statistics
BOWLING GREEN, O.—In recognition of the importance and contributions of statistics to society, the United Nations has designated 2013 as the International Year of Statistics.
Bowling Green State University will join the worldwide celebration with a Day of Statistics from 9 a.m. to noon on Oct. 4 featuring a keynote presentation called "Head Games: The Calculus of Concussions" by Alan Schwarz, New York Times reporter, best-selling author and Pulitzer Prize nominee.
Schwarz’s talk begins at 9 a.m. in 101 Olscamp Hall. The day’s events are free, but registration is required.
Schwarz’s specialty is the integration of probability and statistics into narrative and investigative reporting. Author of “The Numbers Game,” a best-selling history of baseball statistics, he speaks to groups across the nation about the power of mathematics in storytelling.
Schwarz is best known for his four-year series that exposed the seriousness of concussions among athletes of all ages. His investigative pieces are generally seen as having revolutionized the respect and protocol for head injuries in almost every major youth and professional sport.
A panel discussion from 10:30-11:45 a.m. on “Using Statistics for Decision Making” will feature Dr. Jim Albert, a professor of statistics, editor of the journal Quantitative Analysis of Sports, and author of “Analyzing Baseball with R”; Dr. Miriam Krause, an assistant professor of communication sciences and disorders who uses statistics to help interpret data from her research in speech-language pathology; and Dr. Andrew Schocket, director of the American Culture Studies Program and an associate professor of history and American culture studies who has used statistical and social network analysis extensively in his historical research.
“As a citizen, I think it's important to have at least a rudimentary understanding of statistics to make informed decisions,” Schocket said. “When proponents of policies refer to average or median salaries, those are very different animals. When medical professionals refer to the reliability rate of a specific test, that should affect how we think about positive and negative results. When we talk about climate change (short-term variability vs. long-term trends), what foods we should eat (affecting the probability of multiple conditions), what product we should buy (reliability ratings), and so forth, a little knowledge of statistics is essential to informed decision-making.”
The event is presented by the Center for Business Analytics, College of Business, Department of Mathematics and Statistics and the College of Arts and Sciences.
Read more about the International Year of Statistics.