I am teaching two first semester calculus classes and one numerical analysis class. I doubt that I’ll ask for 2 preparations ever again; I’ll get into those reasons later.
I gave a take home test; they had 10 days to do it. I decided to ask an easy warm up question to give them some confidence:
Yes, I covered “linear regression” in class and assigned a homework problem. Data: each student was assigned ONE of these data sets. I didn’t tell them where these came from, but these were the human population of: the earth or China or India or the US (in billions or millions respectively).
And much to my disgust: 2 of the students didn’t do this problem at all, and one who did GOT A NEGATIVE SLOPE for the “best fit line”. He duly plotted the negatively sloped line with the data….
And to think that this student is a graduate student in engineering! Unbelievable. Remember: this was a TAKE HOME test.
Moral: even students that you think are “advanced” have to be TOLD to do a “does this make sense” analysis ofter they obtained a result.
Evidently, this problem is not an isolated one.
And it is unlikely to get better. The article I linked to talks about “punching the button”. Well, they won’t even have to do that.