Teaching and Education Amongst the Youth
Delia North
School of Statistics and Actuarial Science, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

The aim of this session is to prepare the ground for sessions, workshops and special events for the “Youth Theme Day” planned for ISI2013 in Hong Kong.

There will be three formal presentation slots, each followed by brief comments from a member of a carefully selected panel of experts in Statistics Education from around the world. The focus of the comments will be the development of preparations for the ISI2013 Youth theme. The international panel of experts in Statistics Education will also comment and facilitate discussions in the important open floor discussion aimed at structuring the Youth Theme Day for ISI2013.

The first of the three formal slots will be presented by Tim Dunne (South Africa), who will speak about the promotion of Statistics amongst students in high schools, universities and graduates entering the workplace. He will emphasize that a particular challenge with young people is to assist them to develop the insight that they are always summarising the patterns of the past, and by presuming the future will be similar to the past, forming beliefs about patterns yet to emerge as the future unfolds. He will give particular examples and lay the foundation for a participative and vigorous session focusing on our hopes and aims for our students when they enter the workplace.

The second formal presentation in the session will be given by John Harraway (New Zealand). He brings rich experience and expertise from motivating and enthusing tertiary students about statistics, particularly those in service courses and postgraduates in other disciplines. He will focus in particular on how to inspire and empower undergraduate and postgraduate students from other disciplines in appreciating and using statistics, and how his experiences at tertiary level are influencing his current work at the school level.

The third formal presentation slot will be devoted to promoting statistics amongst the 5 to 15 year age group to provide a sound and receptive basis for all students, including those who feed into systems discussed by earlier speakers in the session. The emphasis here will be on how to prepare, attract and excite students to appreciate Statistics across all school levels, including attracting students to consider Statistics as a choice at tertiary level. Speakers in the first part of this presentation slot are Helen MacGillivray (Australia) and Delia North (South Africa) who will speak about professional development of pre- and in-service teachers and resources for teaching Statistics to 5 – 15 year olds and how to educate teachers through resources for their teaching. Katharine Richards (UK) will speak in the second part of this slot and give an overview and future plans of CensusATSchool, a project that has had a great impact on promoting an understanding of, and appreciation for, Statistics amongst 5 – 15 year olds in many countries around the world.

The session concludes with a panel of Statistics Education leaders from around the world discussing the papers delivered and guiding discussions from the floor.

Keywords: Youth; Statistics education; Secondary students

Biography: Professor Delia North is Head of School of Statistics and Actuarial Science at the University of KwaZulu-Natal.