Eating PCBs from Lake Ontario - Is There an Effect or Not?
A News Release Case
Department of Biological Sciences
Western Illinois University
This case is based on an actual news release reporting on research about the effects of eating Lake Ontario fish contaminated with PCBs. Developed to teach students about statistical analysis and experimental design, the case has been used in a senior-level biostatistics course as well as part of a one-week survey of statistics for a biological methods course. It could also be used in an ecology or environmental science course or as a component of a course examining how the media reports science.
- Understand that statistical analysis is simply a tool to aid in the process of conducting research.
- Evaluate the statistical presentation of research results.
- Examine how the media reports scientific results.
KeywordsBiostatistics; polychlorinated biphenyl; PCBs; experimental design; statistical analysis; news media; Lake Ontario; Great Lakes
Topical AreasScientific argumentation, Scientific method, Science and the media
Educational LevelUndergraduate lower division , Undergraduate upper division
Type / MethodsDiscussion
Subject HeadingsStatistics | Epidemiology | Public Health | Ecology | Environmental Science | Journalism |
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