Sample Games and Class Activities

Sample Activities

Sample Student Projects

Practicing Statistics

Why Play Games

How to Write a Scientific Paper or Poster

Guidelines for Statistics Education


IRB Approval

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Learning is essentially hard; it happens best when one is deeply engaged in hard and challenging activities 
        – Papert 1998

While games are engaging, the the primary reasons we use these labs are that they allow students to develop their own research questions, use their own unique data to make decisions, and then tie their conclusions to actual research. These research-like experiences are great motivators in encouraging students to see statistics as more than a collection of facts and mathematical calculations. We hope to excite the power of innovation and creativity that occurs within real-world statistics problems.


Lab Name



Hypothesis  Testing

·   (Z-test or 1-sample t-test)

·   2-sample t-tests (or ANOVA)

  Tangrams are puzzles in which a person is expected to place geometrically shaped pieces into a particular design. The on-line game provides students the opportunity to design many versions of the original game in order to test which variables have the largest effect on task completion.



Data Collection, Regression, and Transformations



This is a three dimensional on-line game based where students use the on-line TigerSTAT game to collect data and explore models for estimating the age of a Siberian tiger. In this game, students act as researchers on a national preserve where they are expected to catch tigers, collect data, analyze their data (using the simple linear regression on transformed data), and draw appropriate conclusions.

Statistically Groundedcoffeetruck2

Understanding p-values

Introduction to Interactions

Full factorial designs to optimize sales/profits.



Students design a study to determine whether factors such as location, time of day, price, type of music, or some combination of these influence sales in a coffee truck buisiness.


mem image

Hypothesis  Testing

·   (Z-test or 1-sample t-test)

·   2-sample t-tests (or ANOVA)

·   Research Project



(Serial Recall-What Influences Memory)

An on-line in which you are expected to repeat a sequence of buttons. Each time you successfully repeat the given sequence of buttons, the sequence gets longer. The challenge is to remember as long a sequence as possible. Students have the opportunity to design multiple versions of the this game in order to test which variables have the largest effect on memory.


Hypothesis  Testing

·   (Z-test or 1-sample t-test)

·   2-sample t-tests (or ANOVA)

·   Research Project

Simple Linear Regression

Psychology (Distracters in task completion)


An on-line game in which you are expected to place specifically shaped pegs into the appropriate holes within a short time period. In the project, students are asked to use this game to design an experiment, collect and analyze data. This game is specifically designed so that students have the opportunity to develop and test their own unique research question.

Fish Pond


Capture-Recapture to Estimate Population Size

Modeling Population Growth over Time


The Fish Pond Game introduces simple capture-recapture techniques to estimate population size. This game asks the players to design their own sampling strategy in order to get the best population estimate.




Under Construction!!

This game doesn't require student handouts. But optional materials on proportions and conditional probability are available.

Epidemiology Many students in a local elementary school are demonstrating flu-like systems. Can you treat the disease before it spreads throughout the city? Simultaneously try to control costs and the number of sick children in order to determine an effective disease control strategy.
multiple regression. Economics

A multi-day introduction to multiple regression that asks students to predict the retail price of used General Motor cars. This activity is currently available in Chapter 3 of Practicing Statistics

Cash for Condoms: Multiple Regression Econometrics

Population control and economic growth in third world countries. This activity is currently available in Chapter 3 of Practicing Statistics




Seed Germination Design of Experiments Ecology

Plant ecologists and physiologists have identified some plant species that respond to unusual environmental cues. For example, some kinds of plants have seeds that germinate only after a recent wildfire. In this lab students can look at a variety of environmental variables that stimulate germination in at least some fire-following species, including temporary high temperature, smoke, charred wood, and specific chemicals found in soils after fire

Electric Fish Categorical Data Neurobiology Contact Dr. Kuiper for the current lab
Global Warming Hockey Stick Graph Principal Component Analysis
Environmental Studies
This activity is currently available in Chapter 10 of Practicing Statistics
HIV and Intravenous Drug Use Survival Analysis Medicine Under Construction!
Building a Better Cup Response Surface Methodology/Optimization Engineering Under Construction!
Under Construction!

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Grinnell College

last updated: 7/23/14

Stat2labs was developed with partial support provided by the Transforming Undergraduate Education in Science (TUES).program at the National Science Foundation under DUE 0510392 and DUE #1043814


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Dr. Shonda Kuiper