Looking Behind the Numbers: Correlations, Rankings, and Permutations

Students begin by revisiting measures of central tendency in new ways that deepen their understanding, with an emphasis on interpreting a collection of measures together. Students then learn about stem-and-leaf plots and scatter plots. By experimenting with different data sets, they begin to see the importance of correlations and lines of best fit. Lastly, students explore permutations by using systematic listings, tree diagrams, and formulas.

NCTM standard: Data Analysis and Probability

• Formulate questions that can be addressed with data and collect, organize, and display relevant data to answer them
• Select and use appropriate statistical methods to analyze data
• Develop and evaluate inferences and predictions that are based on data
• Understand and apply basic concepts of probability

Primary Mathematical Goals

• Determining whether there is a direct or inverse relationship in data
• Creating scatter plots to analyze relationships in data
• Using measures of central tendency, stem-and-leaf plots, and rankings to analyze data
• Applying combinations, permutations, factorials, and tree diagrams in problem-solving situations