STATS.org is a non-profit, non-partisan project to analyze and explain numbers and statistics in the news and to promote statistical literacy in the media and society. It is a joint project of the American Statistical Association and Sense About Science USA.
STATS.org has long provided free advice for journalists on mathematical and statistical issues, whether looking at the statistical data in new studies, talking about how a topic might be analyzed, or just talking through the numbers in a story. We have helped journalists from the Associated Press and ABC News to the New York Times, the Economist and Wired. We are currently building an advisory board of ASA members so that we can expand and enhance this service. Just drop us a line here and we’ll do our best to help!
What did all those studies on coffee really say?
A Washington Post reporter looked into all those health claims for coffee , even those made by her own newspaper.read more
A perfect storm of sampling problems shows why the only true poll is the election itself.read more
A recent plea for scientists to “stop playing dumb on climate change” shows why The New York Times Op Ed page needs a statistician.read more
A historian of science strikes a Swiftian pose in The New York Times: statistically scrupulous scientists need to get their heads out of the clouds on climate change. But maybe that’s— precisely—where they need to be.read more
Hundreds, possibly thousands of health studies may be wrong because researchers ignored human fallibilityread more
“You want statistics to tell you the truth,” wrote Joseph Pulitzer and “you can find truth there if you know how to get at it.” 111 years later, we believe statistics is the new journalism.read more
Should the media cover anti-vaccination claims? It seems as if conventional reporting would probably do more harm than good if it did by reporting both sides and creating the impression of equivalency between weight of evidence and false claims. But what if the latest claim is a statistical analysis—and a senior CDC vaccine researcher appears to back it up?read more
Statistically Significant: Key Concepts for Reading—and Writing—about Statistics
Are Republican Senators in favor of paid parental leave for their staff but not the public? A survey suggests so—but is it an example of selection bias?read more
Are You a Journalist?
Need statistical guidance on a story? We have helped reporters from ABC News to Wired to think through the numbers on their stories. And we want to help you. Just give us a reasonable deadline and contact us here.