In implementing the Teaching a New Generation of Statistics Educators Stats Ed project for the fall 2014 semester, co-principal investigators Monica Dabos of College of the Canyons and Michael Posner of Villanova University are building a foundation for statistics education reform among the nation’s community colleges.
By cooperating with some of the country’s most respected Statistics educators, the college is utilizing a three-year, $571,000 National Science Foundation (NSF) grant to grow a project which already involves more than 35 instructors throughout the greater Los Angeles area.
“Statistics definitely has its backbone in mathematics, however mathematical and statistical thinking are very distinct,” said COC instructor Dr. Monica Dabos, who has been an instrumental figure in both developing and executing the TANGO Stats Ed project.
“Yet you have statistics being taught in a mathematical way that is too deterministic because teachers aren’t specialized,” added Dabos. “If a person has a graduate degree in statistics, they actually aren’t eligible to teach statistics at a community college in California.”
According to a Conference Board of Mathematical Sciences (CBMS) survey in 2010, there were 137,000 community college students enrolled in ‘Intro to Stats’ courses in the United States.
Yet, only 2 percent of full-time and part-time community college mathematics instructors have degrees in statistics. Compounding the problem is the reality that 60 percent of those teaching statistics are doing so on a part-time basis.
Since her days as an undergraduate student, Dabos had been focusing on these issues. Yet, it wasn’t until her partnership with Villanova University professor Dr. Michael A. Posner that her mission began to more fully materialize.
“I focus on professional development at Villanova, and have an interest at spreading that to many levels,” Posner says. “When Monica told me about her focus on the community college level, it seemed like a manageable project for a specific group particularly in need.”
After the two outlined the project, Dabos approached the college’s then-Assistant Superintendent/Vice President of Instruction Joe Gerda.
“When she approached me with this, it seemed like such a worthy cause,” Gerda says. “It’s amazing the incredible mentors she’s brought on board, including Jessica Utts, who’s the new president of the American Statistical Association.”
Added Gerda, “We’ve identified the problem, and for a long time with the lack of structure in professional development for statistics teachers, it was hopelessness — but now Monica and Michael are working on a legitimate solution.”
Gerda, now teaching and co-coordinating statistics courses with Dabos, worked to secure a grant through the COC Chancellor’s office that established a summer “pilot project” in the college’s Summer Training Institute for Statistics earlier this year.
Coordinated by Dabos and Kathy Kubo, the Summer Institute was held at COC in July, with numerous community college instructors and two high school teachers receiving instruction from leading educators Dr. Allan Rossman and Dr. Beth Chance.
The success of the summer pilot program can only mean good things for the larger-scale TANGO initiative, which will continue on grant funds provided by the Chancellor’s office until the beginning of 2015, when NSF funding kicks in.
Once in place, TANGO Stats Ed is projected to have a positive impact on more than 10,000 community college students across the nation.
Additionally, the structure is sustainable, meaning statistics instructors educated through TANGO will be able to return as program mentors. This design will create a web of knowledge that goes well beyond the years and dollars provided by the NSF grant.
California State University, Northridge administrators informed educators, students and staff Friday that they may have all been affected by a massive security breach suffered this spring by Blackbaud, CSUN's third-party technology provider.
Los Angeles County Supervisor Kathryn Barger has released a statement regarding a recent incident involving deputies from the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station - an incident, which was recorded by bystanders, and has since gone viral.
The U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) announced the award of $38 million in Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act Recovery Assistance grants to 14 Revolving Loan Funds (RLF) grantees, including the Los Angeles County Development Authority (LACDA).
Circle of Hope has announced their 16th annual signature Tea fundraiser, which will be held Saturday, Oct. 3, will feature something new and different with an internationally themed dinner and program.
Los Angeles County Chief Executive Officer Sachi A. Hamai, who agreed to temporarily postpone her retirement to help lead the County through the initial phase of the COVID-19 emergency, announced that she will retire at the end of August 2020.
Children’s Bureau is now offering an online foster-adoption orientation for individuals and/or couples who are interested helping children in foster care while reunifying with birth families or to provide legal permanency by adoption.
Los Angeles County Public Health on Monday confirmed 19 new deaths and 1,920 new cases of COVID-19 countywide, as officials see signs of stability in key indicators, including daily hospitalizations and deaths.
Along with added stress for struggling businesses and a failing unemployment agency, California Governor Gavin Newsom estimated Monday it would cost the state $700 million per week to implement the president’s proposed unemployment plan.
In an effort to assist renters with limited means affected by the COVID-19 crisis, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors has provided $100 million in CARES Act funds to create a COVID-19 Rent Relief program, operated by the Los Angeles County Development Authority.
In a socially distanced, drive-thru event, a number of Santa Clarita Valley organizations came together Thursday to distribute “peace bags” to students, with the hopes of spreading joy, positivity and community engagement.
In separate incidents, Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Station deputies arrested a wanted felon and his companion on felony warrants last week and three suspects on auto theft charges Friday and over the weekend.
%d bloggers like this:
SCVTV Media Center
22505 14th Street Unit E
Santa Clarita, Calif. 91321