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Articles on Statistics

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A girl views the body of her father, who died of COVID-19, while mourners who can’t visit in person are onscreen. Joe Raedle/Getty Images News via Getty Images

279,700 extra deaths in the US so far in this pandemic year

Health statisticians keep careful tabs on how many people die every week. Based on what's happened in past years, they know what to expect – but 2020 death counts are surging beyond predictions.
The number of confirmed and probable deaths from COVID-19 in New York City was 23,247 as of July 10, which is more than eight times the number who died in the 9/11 attack. Angela Weiss / AFP via Getty Images

How deadly is COVID-19? A biostatistician explores the question

The COVID-19 death toll in the US is now over 130,000. What do 130,000 fatalities look like? A biostatistician provides some perspective.
Nurses and other health care workers in New York mourned colleagues who have died during the outbreak of the novel coronavirus. Johannes Eisele/AFP/Getty Images

Coronavirus deaths in San Francisco vs. New York: What causes such big differences in cities’ tolls?

Why one city suffers significantly more deaths than another isn't always obvious. A simple experiment shows how failing to consider certain factors can point policy makers in the wrong direction.
UK opposition leader, Keir Starmer, with a government graph showing an international comparison of COVID-19 death tolls. UK Parliament/Jessica Taylor/PA Wire/PA Images

Coronavirus: public confused and suspicious over government’s death toll information

Most people believe the government was wrong to stop publishing international comparisons of COVID-19 death tolls.
A statistics professor used his expertise in calculating probabilities to come up with a 98 winning percentage for Tim Hortons popular Roll up the Rim contest. (Photo Illustration/The Conversation)

Here’s how I cracked Roll up the Rim and won (almost) every time

Tim Hortons changed Roll up the Rim to include a digital element. A statistician correctly predicted that playing on the last day of the contest would dramatically increase the odds of winning.

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