Data Assignments in Substantive Courses: Getting Undergraduates Excited and Interested in Data Science
By Lonna Rae Atkeson, Florida State University
Teaching undergraduate methods is a difficult task in a major in which there are many math- and science-phobic students. Nevertheless, a foundation in scientific thinking, an understanding of basic statistics, and an introduction to data and principles of data science and its utility should be required curriculum and competency for a bachelor’s degree in political science. To achieve this, I transformed my undergraduate public opinion and electoral behavior course into one that emphasizes and teaches students the power of data in understanding the political and social world.