Initial Conceptions in the Statistical Reasoning and Modeling Processes in Engineering Students
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The cognitive view in educational psychology is considered one of the traditional perspectives for psychologists, who recognize that students may have different but identifiable conceptions of learning. The work aimed to compare initial conceptions of statistical modeling processes and levels of statistical reasoning in engineering students. The research had a qualitative approach with a multiple-case design. As a source of data collection, a questionnaire was designed and applied to 38 students taking the subject Probability and Statistics. The results and data analysis showed that none of the participants went through all the phases of statistical modeling, evidencing a low ability to establish relationships in the data and interconnect statistical concepts. Consequently, the students failed to reach the maximum level of statistical reasoning. The participants also identified difficulties in establishing coherent interpretations when making representations of statistical models such as frequency tables, graphs and measures of central tendency. Therefore, there is a need to continue developing research that provides theoretical foundations for the characterization of the modeling and statistical reasoning processes to improve the learning of statistics and probability in university students.
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