A Simple Way to Teach Regression
13 Pages Posted: 10 Jan 2020 Last revised: 31 May 2023
Date Written: May 30, 2023
LearnRegression.com is free web app that teaches regression quickly and easily by “inverting” the usual pedagogy: instead of asking users to run regressions on data, it asks them to “create” data by clicking on a graph to achieve a given outcome, like a statistically significant line. By trial and error, students learn by doing, and gain an intuitive feel for the relationship between data and statistical outcomes. This paper describes exercises that teach: (i) the link between hypothesis testing, confidence regions, and statistical significance, (ii) the difference between correlation and causality, and (iii) how to diagnose functional form misspecification. The exercises take about 5-10 minutes to complete and can be used in-class or assigned as homework. Successful completion of each task is rewarded with feedback that reveals the learning objective.
Keywords: Teaching Regression; statistical significance; correlation vs. causality
JEL Classification: A2 (Economic Education)
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation