In February 2021 and February 2022, Hope IT offered an Introduction to Data Analysis course. Work with data is a red hot subject matter in the IT industry right now.
This course featured Goggle’s Data Studio, that allows one to create dashboards, on-line, and for free. It’s a pretty good tool to start learning, and can connect to many data sources, including Google Sheets. We offered this course on-line twice, and had 3 students combined in these 2 courses.
We were able to begin to see how data begins to tell a story. Placing data in grids begins to show this, and even more so when using charts. We covered creating our own cell phone data from members in the course, and then reviewed datasets from Kaggle, like the Video Game Sales and COVID Positive cases in the US. We reviewed how to review the data, just by looking at minimums, maximums, counts, sums, and even mean (average) and median.
And there was plenty to talk about and explore. In fact, we explained how to avoid “dirty tricks” with statistics, referencing the book How to Lie With Statistics, by Darrel Huff. One can control the sampling of your data, and draw wrong conclusions. One can trick others to think change is occurring more drastically, if one fails to start at zero in charts. We also covered 4 curious datasets (Anscombe’s Quartet) that all have nearly the mean (averages) and other statistical function values, but once you graph them, you see they are indeed different: conclusion, you need to review data from multiple ways, and one way is to review their charts. Lastly, we also discussed how Data Science is used to make future predictions, using models and other statistical techniques.
Our lesson plan for the course is below:
We also created a write-up for instructors.
Below is one example of how to embed the Data Studio dashboard in a web site. That was fun to do to connect our WordPress course with our Data Analysis course.