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Need Data for an Exercise? Check Out This Tool
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When you're writing an exercise - either for class or test use - you sometimes need to generate fake datasets. We found an online tool that let's you quickly do that: Mockaroo.




General Services Administration is an independent agency of the US government and they conducted a study to see if more exposure to light during the day resulted in people falling asleep faster at night. The result:


...staff who got more bright light during the day – perhaps because they sat next to a window, walked to work or spent their lunch breaks outdoors – fell asleep faster at night and slept for longer than those who got less light. Workers exposed to more bright daylight between 8 am and noon took an average of 18 minutes to fall asleep at night, compared with 45 minutes in the low-light exposure group.

If you wanted students to do a little data analysis on this idea, you could create your own dataset using Mockaroo. Let's say you want data from 100 subjects and you want two variables: "Walk to Work" (true/false) and "AmountOfSleep" (minutes 0-60). Here's how you could generate that dataset in Mockaroo (note: video contains no audio):




Voila - quick dataset generation.


You may not get a dataset similar to what the researchers found, but you also might want to point out that there's an alternative explanation to why employees who received more light when they walked to work fell asleep faster: in addition to the sunlight, they also were getting more exercise, which could be the real cause behind them falling asleep faster.


Note: Mockaroo is not associated with Cengage. It's just a very cool tool that some of us have found useful.

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