Contest 2012/13
$1000 $700 $500 $300

Statistics & Actuarial Science Department
University of Waterloo

Thanks to everyone who participated in the contest
and congratulations to the teams of winning entries.

Winning Submissions

I kid you not, statistics is now the sexiest subject on the planet. — Hans Rosling
...without statistics we are cast adrift on an ocean of confusion, but armed with stats we can take control of our lives, hold our rulers to account and see the world as it really is. What's more, Hans concludes, we can now collect and analyse such huge quantities of data and at such speeds that scientific method itself seems to be changing.
The Joy of Stats program note, presented by Dr. Hans Rosling and BBC 2010.
    (4m youtube version, 20m TED talk and full 60m video)


We invite you to enter Statistics Contest 2012/13, to invent and design your own approach to master the concepts of probability and statistics presented in our university courses STAT 230 and 231.

This contest seeks to generate new, outside-the-box ideas for presenting, understanding and participating with the concepts underlying basic probability and statistics courses.

Student participants are hereby challenged to combine creativity and inventiveness with academic and technical skills to explore innovative ways to learn and master the concepts and practice of statistics.

See the Submissions section below for details about what to do to enter the contest.


Examples & Tools

Please visit the Probability and Statistics Video page to see some rudimentary examples of video and powerpoint presentations.

Also visit the Examples, Techniques and Tools page to see a few different presentation styles that may act as inspiration. Links to different html5/javascript tools are also included to show that implementations don't have to be complicated.

Rules & Guidelines

  1. Who can apply:
    • any current undergraduate or graduate student of the University of Waterloo not connected with running this contest
    • any team of up to 5 UW students per team
  2. Prizes are awarded to a winning submission from a team or an individual.
  3. Multiple submissions by individuals and teams are allowed.
  4. A submission must cover a single concept from the probability and statistics course curriculum.
  5. Applicants agree to allow their names and submitted material to be used for educational and promotional purposes. Applicants retain copyright of their material.


April 5th, 2013 (Friday) is the last day to submit your project to the contest. See submission details below. We encourage you to contact us early for feedback about your ideas. You can submit your project early and we may use it in an upcoming course and make you famous.


Submissions will be evaluated by members of the Statistics and Actuarial Science departments and their designates.


Student submissions must include

Submission format: many electronic formats are suitable, for example: powerpoint animation, html5 canvas/javascript interaction, and video. See the Platforms & Formats sidebar to the left for details.

Submission method: Fill out a copy of this project description document and email it to

You will receive further details about the submission procedure after we get your initial document.

Help & Contacts

Advisors are available throughout the contest for consultation on course material and technical implementation matters.

Enquiries about the contest can be addressed to


We gratefully acknowledge funding from the University of Waterloo Learning and Teaching Enhancement (LITE) Grant program through the Centre for Teaching Excellence (CTE).


This section will expand as questions arise.

UW stats building


Base your submissions on one of the course topics contained in the following course outlines and notes:

STAT 230 Probability:

STAT 231 Statistics:

Sample topics include

Platforms & Formats

We want to use your submissions in class and on the web. Mobile apps are fine too, as long as there is also a version that works on the web. Use formats that are common across Windows and Mac OS and different browsers. For example, use compressed video formats like MP4, or any of the newer HTML5 video formats: OGGV, ..., not AVI which makes very large files. (UW classrooms have Windows PCs.)

Central Limit Theorem
(animated gif)
Monty Hall Problem
(animated gif)