DataFest winners

Last weekend (April 12-14, 2019), we hosted DataFest for the first time at Denison. DataFest is a weekend-long event during which small teams of undergraduate students work intensively to gain insight from a large dataset. The American Statistical Association coordinates DataFest on many college campuses around the nation during different weekends in the spring.

Students were given a surprise dataset on Friday evening. They worked in teams to make meaning of the data and present their findings on Sunday at around noon.

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Denison Students attend StatFest

On Sept 22, I attended StatFest at Amherst College in Massachusetts with three of our students Anamay Agnihotri, Fatima Haroon, and Smelanda Jean-Baptiste. For all of them, it was their first statistics conference. StatFest is a conference aimed at undergraduate students from historically underrepresented groups to consider careers and graduate studies in the statistical sciences. The conference had it all on a single day. There was time dedicated to networking, poster presentations, keynote speeches, panels with professionals both from nonprofit and industry.

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DA 350 Labs Tackle Real Life Data Problems

The mathematical methods used in Data Analytics are constantly evolving.  Traditional methods learned in introductory statistics courses such as hypothesis testing and linear regression were designed before the era of computers and could be calculated by hand on small data sets.  With the rise of massive computational power, new methods are constantly being developed that give better predictions and lead to better decisions across many domains.  In DA 350, Advanced Methods for Data Analytics, students explore some of these modern methods and use them to solve a wide variety of practical problems with real life data sets. 

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DA 301 students join with the community of Women in Analytics

Denison University is lucky to be positioned so close to the Columbus metro area, a growing hub for technology and data analytics. On March 15, a sold out (450+ attendees) Women in Analytics conference (#WIA2018) featured female leaders in industrial and academic applications for data analytics. Best of all, the meeting was held at the Greater Columbus Convention Center, a short 30 minute drive from Denison.

I am currently teaching the DA 301 course, Practicum in Data Analytics, where junior-level students synthesize their data wrangling, analysis, and communication skills to tackle fuzzy, open-ended problems, with real clients and real data.

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Escaping the echo chamber

Oliver Gladfelter ’18 recently published a data-driven article about how we engage with political media online and how likely that media is to change our minds.  Interestingly, he found that people are more or less equally likely to engage with political media regardless of their, or the videos’, political ideology.  What did affect engagement was the videos’ perceived credibility.  Everyone was more likely to engage with videos that they deemed the most credible, and the difference was more pronounced with older viewers than millennials.

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Consulting with data analytics

My name is Mara Kilgore and I am a junior math major at Denison.  For ten weeks this summer, I and Maddie Boster ’18 had the opportunity to work in the Advanced Analytics department of ICC Technology, a consulting firm in Westerville, Ohio. ICC is a company passionate about the development of technology to advance business intellect.

            One highlight of my internship was the way I was able to engage with ICC employees and resources. Every morning, our office participated in an ICC tradition, the daily stand-up.

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Evidence-based policing

My name is Conor Loy ’20, a Denison Data Analytics major.  I spent this past summer at Cambridge University in England doing data consulting for the Police Executive program at the Insitute of Criminology. I ended up meeting with 26 students at Cambridge, and am continuing to work on one project looking at the correlation between street checks and charges.

We worked on all kinds of police data sets. My main data set contains information about street checks and charges in western Canada.

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Welcome to Denison Data Analytics

Welcome and thanks for visiting!  As my colleagues will attest, I have been meaning to start this blog for some time because I think that we’re doing some pretty exciting stuff here in Data Analytics at Denison (#DAatDU) that is worth sharing.  We hope to convey some of this excitement and chronicle the development of a truly unique interdisciplinary program that is growing faster than we could have imagined.  Posts will be periodically written by any number of faculty and students associated with the program on any number of topics. 

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