Monday, August 6, 2007

Mathematics and High School Economics, Part II

Back on March 20, 2007, I blogged about the back cover of the Journal of Political Economy. Once again, they provide a good source from literature to help your students develop more critical thinking skills.

The most recent issue featured an excerpt from War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy. In the quoted piece, the character speaks about correlation and causality. This is a subject last visited in this blog on October 17, 2006.

The character notices that when looking at his watch at given time, the church bells ring. Does this mean that the watch hands (non-digital, obviously) cause the bells to ring? He also notes that a cold spring wind blows at the time the oak buds are opening. He again asks whether he should infer that the opening oak buds cause the cold spring winds.

I would think this would help students understand the difference between correlation and causality. Your thoughts are welcome, as always.

Posted by TSchilling at August 6, 2007 10:37 AM

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