Cognition and Instruction: Reasoning about bias in sampling
 Jane Watson,
 Ben Kelly
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Although sampling has been mentioned as part of the chance and data component of the mathematics curriculum since about 1990, little research attention has been aimed specifically at school students’ understanding of this descriptive area. This study considers the initial understanding of bias in sampling by 639 students in grades 3, 5, 7, and 9. Three hundred and fortyone of these students then undertook a series of lessons on chance and data with an emphasis on chance, data handling, sampling, and variation. A posttest was administered to 285 of these students and two years later all available students from the original group (328) were again tested. This study considers the initial level of understanding of students, the nature of the lessons undertaken at each grade level, the postinstruction performance of those who undertook lessons, and the longitudinal performance after two years of all available students. Overall instruction was associated with improved performance, which was retained over two years but there was little difference between those who had or had not experienced instruction. Results for specific grades, some of which went against the overall trend are discussed, as well as educational implications for the teaching of sampling across the years of schooling based on the classroom observations and the changes observed.
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 Title
 Cognition and Instruction: Reasoning about bias in sampling
 Journal

Mathematics Education Research Journal
Volume 17, Issue 1 , pp 2457
 Cover Date
 20050201
 DOI
 10.1007/BF03217408
 Print ISSN
 10332170
 Online ISSN
 2211050X
 Publisher
 Springer Netherlands
 Additional Links
 Topics
 Authors

 Jane Watson ^{(1)}
 Ben Kelly ^{(1)}
 Author Affiliations

 1. University of Tasmania, Private Bag 66, Hobart, Tsmania, 7001