Homo Professoris, Part III: The 'Show Me Your Big D' Lecture
My lectures are often awkwardly funny on purpose. This time it was accidental.
Posted Oct 14, 2013
Here’s what happened.
Twenty minutes into PSYC 210 (Statistics in the Behavioral Sciences), while navigating through my sleep walking fogginess, I began lecturing on the importance of calculating an effect size (namely, Cohen’s d) if an inferential test yielded a statistically significant result. Among other examples, we discussed evolved sex differences with large effect sizes, such as hand grip strength and the desire for casual sex. All was going well.
And then, quite suddenly, I stepped in it like I’ve never stepped in it before. With absolutely no conscious awareness of my myriad double entendres, the following exited my mouth over a 3-minute period:
- "Folks, so from now on, I always want you to show me the d.”
- “Because it’s not enough to merely say you have something significant. Whether it’s meaningful and useful depends, in part, on the size of your d.”
- “If you have a small d, then you might have something significant, but most will not be interested in it. If you have a medium or large d, then you may well have something important on your hands.”
- “So moving forward, the final step in your homework problems will always be to show me the size of your d if you have something significant.”
- "And the key to nailing exam 2 next week is to show me your d when and where it’s appropriate to do so."
I kid you not, folks. This actually happened.
Not until some mental fog lifted did I hear and see several students cackling and nearly falling out of their chairs. Puzzled, I inquired what was so funny.
That’s when today’s “Most Awesome Student in the World" raised his hand and said: “Sorry, Dr. Kuhle. I’m just surprised you didn’t say, So if you really, really want it, then you have to beg for the big d.”
My other posts in this ongoing series:
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Copyright © 2013 Barry X. Kuhle. All rights reserved.