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Sample Means - Exploring Sampling Variability

Sample Means - Exploring Sampling Variability

Activity Description

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Students will explore sampling variability in the sample means of different random samples of a population, using data on Internet access from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey.

Suggested Grade Level

7

Approximate Time Required

45-60 minutes

Learning Objectives

  • Students will be able to help create dot plots to represent a collection of sample means.
  • Students will be able to select a random sample from a population.
  • Students will be able to understand that sample means for different random samples of the same population will differ due to random selection.
  • Students will be able to understand that there is less sampling variability in the sample mean when the sample size is large than when the sample size is small.

Materials Required

  • The student version of this activity, 8 pages
  • A printed version of the data cards in the teacher version of the activity
  • Calculators
  • Sticky notes

Teacher Notes

Blooms Taxonomy

Applying
Blooms Taxonomy

Students will apply their knowledge of means and sampling to help create dot plots of sample means. Students will also analyze the dot plots to determine the center and spread of the data.

Subject

Middle School Math

Topics

  • Random sampling
  • Sample mean
  • Sampling variability

Skills Taught

  • Calculating sample means
  • Constructing and comparing dot plots

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