STAT 1350: Elementary Statistics Names:
Lab Activity #2
Statistical Scavenger Hunt I

The Gallup Organization ( provides data on all aspects of
the attitudes and lifestyles of people around the world. Gallup is just
one of many organizations who try to determine what the public is thinking
by conducting scientific polls. Try to find a report at Gallup or any
other opinion poll source that lists as much information as possible.

1. What is the title and source of the report you found?

2. For the report you found of a poll, answer all the questions below
that are addressed in your article. The report you find must provide
answers to at least five of the eight questions.

a. Who carried out the survey?

b. What was the population of interest? What in the article
indicated this as a population of interest?

c. How was the sample selected?

d. How large was the sample?

e. How were the subjects contacted?

f. When was the survey conducted?

g. What were the exact questions asked?

3. Carefully describe the parameter of interest in the poll you found.

4. Did any of the questions above help you find a source of bias in the
conclusions of the report?

5. Do any of the questions above that were not addressed in the article
give you concern about other potential sources of bias in the
conclusions of the report? Explain.

6. Does the article present a margin of error that is associated with the
poll? If so, what is it? Does it present the sample size?

7. After all margin of errors and sample sizes are listed on the board,
record them here.

|Margin of |Sample |
|error |size |
| | |
| | |
| | |
| | |
| | |
| | |
| | |
| | |

8. Examine the relationship between the sample size and the margin of
error. As the sample size increases, does the margin of error increase
or decrease?


January 11, 2013

U.S. Flu Reports in December Higher Than in Prior Years

3.2% reported having flu the prior day

by Alyssa Brown
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Americans' self-reports of the flu spiked early this
season, rising in December to levels typically not seen until February. An
average of 3.2% of Americans reported having the flu the day before they
were surveyed in December. This is higher than what Gallup found in the
same month in any past year since it started tracking flu daily in 2008.
Self-reports of the flu peaked in February in three of the last four flu
seasons -- with an average of 3.3% saying they had the flu "yesterday" in
the 2008-2009 and the 2010-2011 seasons, and an average of 3.0% reporting
having the flu "yesterday" in the 2011-2012 season. The only time this
pattern did not occur was during the 2009-2010 season, when the flu peaked
in October amid the outbreak of the H1N1 flu virus. This early rise in
Americans' self-reports of the flu in December suggests that the peak of
the 2012-2013 flu season may be worse than the previous four seasons.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which tracks clinically
confirmed influenza through collaborating laboratories in all 50 states and
the District of Columbia, has reported similar trends. The CDC announced
that the percentage of people visiting their healthcare provider for flu-
like illnesses significantly increased to 5.6% in the last week of
December, up from 2.8% during the first week of the month.
The Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index asks 1,000 Americans each day
whether they had a cold or the flu "yesterday." It is possible that the
average of daily cold and flu prevalence is underestimated because those
who were sick the day before may be less likely to respond to a phone
survey than those who were not sick. Still, the opportunity for year-over-
year comparisons with data from previous cold and flu seasons provides
useful insights into their respective changes over time.
Flu, Cold Rates Highest Among Hispanics and Those With Lower Incomes, as Is
Hispanics, as is usually the case, were by far the most likely to report
having the flu (9.2%) or a cold (12.0%) on any given day in December. Low-
income Americans -- along with smokers and those with asthma -- also
reported among the highest flu and cold rates in the country last month.
Americans aged 30 to 44 were the age group most likely to report the flu in
December. This is