Math CentralQuandaries & Queries


Question from manny, a student:

You have administered a standardized test of manual dexterity to two groups of 10 semi skilled workers. One of these two groups of workers will be employed by you to work in a warehouse with many fragile items. The higher the manual dexterity of a worker the less likelihood that worker will break significant inventory. Because of a unique contract you must hire all 10 employees from one of the two groups and none of the employees from the other.

You must decide which group to choose. Choose at least two measures of central tendency and at least one measure of dispersion for each group and use those to make your choice. Be sure to justify your choice with at least one page of discussion and analysis.

Hi Manny,

Here is the data you sent.

Group A Scores Group B Scores
30 62
57 64
62 78
66 79
85 81
95 82
98 85
99 85
99 88
100 91

I would calculate the mean, the median, the range and the standard deviation for each of the two data sets. The means are very similar but the other three measures are quite different between the two groups.

The decision as to which group to hire depends on many factors. Is consistency important? If so maybe group B is the better choice? Is there a training program so that the people in group A that need improving can be helped? Can one of the people in group A be given a different job? How do the manual dexterity test results relate to actual breakage?

I hope this helps,





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