Prediction (Models Vs Expert Judgment)
Imagine that you are running the UCR (our university) admissions office.
A statistics professor has suggested that you could do a better job of picking students for the school if the admissions office used models to predict success and then just admit the students that score highest. Note: Humans can still be used to numerically code subjective judgments.
1. What do you think of this plan? What might models do better than expert admissions officers?
2. What problems do you anticipate? How would you solve them?
3. How can we ensure that the model maintains what makes UCR unique?
Hint 1: Specify what measures of success the model is trying to predict for applicants. That is, what metric is the model trying to maximize.
Hint 2: Even if you are against using models, you still must base your write-up on this week’s readings (and not just discuss your own opinions)!
MUST READ TWO REQUIRED ARTICLES AND 1 or more OPTIONAL READING
Please do not use other resources.
Write-ups have a strict 600-word limit and are penalized for exceeding 600 words Shorter write-ups also tend to do poorly. Aim for 500-600 words.
Include the word count at the top of the document (e.g., “Word Count: 598”).
Hint: Please do NOT define terms or write an intro, conclusion, or background. Quoting directly from readings is almost always a bad idea. DO make sure to do the readings thoroughly. Knowledge cannot be faked.
Use 12-point font and 1.5 line spacing.
TIP/requirements, PLEASE READ!
There rarely exist right answers to these questions. That’s what makes the questions interesting, useful, and fun (we hope). Take the opportunity to escape the need to give the professor what you think he wants and instead give the professor what you think.
Good write-ups will always reflect a solid understanding of the material, but that should not be the core of the write-up.
The core should reveal insight and creativity. These, of course, flow from a solid understanding, but they go beyond that understanding.
The following are a few tangible, specific tips based on almost three years of grading write-ups. I offer them to you in roughly decreasing order of how frustrating their violations are to a grader.
1. Be realistic. There is nothing more irritating than a cute suggestion (for example, of how an organization might mitigate a particular bias) that works theoretically but is utterly infeasible in the real world. Perhaps the best criterion is to ask yourself if you’d be willing to sit in a manager’s office advocating his or her use of your recommendation.
2. Don’t regurgitate the reading. You never need to waste space including definitions from the reading. Write as if your audience not only has read the assigned materials but also knows them well. When necessary, cite a concept as briefly as possible. The fact that you’ve done the reading should be revealed to us by your thinking, NOT by some quotation.
3. Start quickly and end abruptly. For these short write-ups, introductions, background, and conclusions are almost entirely unnecessary. Even worse, they take away space that is much better used in other ways. We don’t expect these things to read like English compositions. Nor are we strangers to why you’re writing in the first place. Jump right in.
4. Less is more. Believe it or not, a common mistake is to include too many ideas — not because too many ideas itself is bad, but because these ideas, as intriguing, tantalizing, and, yes, right as they might be, are often too poorly developed. Don’t make this mistake! We’re not impressed with laundry lists. It’s much better to write about a few things really well.
5. Choose specific over abstract. Precision is good. It’s good for communication, and it’s good for sharpening thinking. When you feel yourself getting fuzzy, think to yourself: I need an example. We love examples. Make it real.
Oh, and have fun! This is an opportunity to be creative
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