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### Research Paper Example

What is the average number of words in a sentence from your statistics book? You are to do a statistical analysis and report your finding both numerically and in the form of a short paper. Because there are a great many sentences in the book, you probably will not want to take a census. Therefore you may estimate the true mean by taking a sample.

Your first challenge will be to design a sampling procedure that will yield a random sample. Your procedure should be one that gives every sentence in the book an equal chance of being selected. You must describe this procedure that you use in your written results. If the sample is not taken correctly, then the results will mean nothing.

After you have taken a sample of 60 sentences, you will use the computer to do your computation. You can have the computer give you 90%, 95% and 99% confidence intervals for the true mean number of words in a sentence in our text. Explain what these results mean. You should turn in a typed paper with computer output. Your paper should be about two or three pages long.

You will quickly discover that the hard part of this assignment is taking the sample. The rest should be fairly easy, even the writing up of results.

If you have any questions, ask.

Variations of this assignment over the years included estimating the average number of pages in library books, the average age of library books, the average number of letters of the words in the dictionary, the average number of letters of last names of people in the telephone directory, the average number of letters in last names of the students at the college, the average number of words in the sentences used in Time Magazine, and the average age of people listed in Whos Who.

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