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I "Heart" Stats: Learning to Love Statistics

University of Notre Dame via edX

This course may be unavailable.


When you meet a new person, it is hard to know what to expect. You may not be able to read the person or understand what they mean. Even if you want to have a good relationship with them, this lack of understanding can make interactions tense, unpredictable and scary! The same is true for a lot of people as they encounter statistics and mathematical ways of working with data. Statistics can be confusing and opaque. Symbols, Greek letters, very large and very small numbers, and how to interpret all of this can leave to feeling cold and disengaged—even fearful and resentful.

But in the modern information age, having a healthy relationship with statistics can make life a whole lot easier. We are constantly faced with an onslaught of data and claims about it—from news articles, to Facebook and blog posts, casual and professional conversations, reports at our workplace, advertising, and claims from politicians and public officials. How can we process that information, make sense of it, evaluate truth claims, and put ourselves in a position to act on the information? One of the most important ways is by befriending statistics and consistently using statistical ways of thinking.

The purpose of this course, then is to help you develop a functional, satisfying, and useful life-long relationship with statistics. To achieve that goal, we will take a non-technical approach—you will learn how statistics work and why they are so helpful in evaluating the world of information that is around us. You will learn about the logic of statistical thinking and the concepts (rather than the mathematical details and probability theory) that guide statistical inferences and conclusions.

You do not need to be a math whiz to take this course. If you can add, subtract, multiply, and divide (or just be able to use a calculator to do that!), you will be more than able to handle what will happen as this relationship develops.

By the end of the course you will be able to:

  • Identify the most important features of a data set
  • Select a statistical test based on the features of the data
  • Think like a statistical detective
  • Understand the relationship between two different characteristics or variables
  • Perform some simple statistical calculations and draw some conclusions from real data
  • Hopefully, love stats!

We’ll do all of this using entertaining examples related to real-life situations we all encounter in everyday life.

Taught by

Dan Myers


4.7 rating, based on 6 Class Central reviews

Start your review of I "Heart" Stats: Learning to Love Statistics

  • Profile image for Steve Wang
    Steve Wang
    8 modules. easy to follow. entertaining videos. lots of practice problems/homework (no deadlines). very helpful teaching staff. one final exam at the end of the course.

    learn (by doing) central limit theorem, dispersion, hypothesis testing, t-test, one-way anova, chi-squares, simple regression, and correlation.
  • Anonymous
    The BEST statistics course I have ever taken and I have taken quite a few during my undergrad and grad education. I never thought that learning statistics could actually be fun. This class gave a clear concept in basic statistics and how to apply those concepts to real life problems. I am really grateful to University of Notre Dame, Professor Dan and Sara for offering such a fun but useful class as a MOOC.
  • Javier
    Excellent course.
    Very good materials. Great teacher's attitude.
    Lots of practice. I couldn't finish because I didn't have time.
    I will definitely try to complete it in another iteration
  • Profile image for Buttercup Pansies
    Buttercup Pansies
  • Fabi

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