75 word response to Classmates Answer - Bennett and Briggs Statistical Studies

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Speaking Of Statistics

Findings from statistical studies as stated by Bennett and Briggs are:

• Smoking increases the risk of heart disease.

• Eating margarine can increase the risk of heart disease.

• One glass of wine per day can protect against heart disease but increases the risk of breast cancer.

• Potato chips and sugary sodas are the foods most strongly associated with weight gain.

From the findings that came from the Harvard Nurses’ Health Study conducted over the next 10 to 20 years the most important results are that nurses that responded to the questionnaires said that the study has helped them to pay more attention to how they live their lives (Bennett & Briggs, 2012, pg. 44). I believe that the findings above have already altered my lifestyle as a result of them and I am really proud to say that I quitted smoking about six months ago.

The Harvard Nurses` health Study is an observational study because “in anobservational study, we observe or measure specific characteristics while trying to be careful to avoid influencing or modifying the characteristics we are observing” (Bennett & Briggs, 2012, pg.19). In this study researchers used questionnaires to observe findings but didn`t try to influence responses given. In contrast the purpose of an experiment is to study the effects of some treatment” (Bennett & Briggs, 2012, pg.19). A practical and ethical way to gather similar data would be by carrying out blood tests to measure cholesterol levels, hormone levels, etc. Researchers should be concerned about that fact that only 120,000 of the original 370,000 questionnaires were returned because not even half of the nurses gave a response. This would probably mean that these nurses are not leaving a healthy lifestyle, but we don`t know for sure. A lot of the issues about personal health are also sensitive material and often people and especially healthcare providers are not ready to share facts that may affect other people opinion about them.

I do believe that dishonesty could be leading researchers to incorrect conclusions because if for instance most of the nurses interviewed would have lied, than results would been inconclusive. All the participants in the Harvard Nurses` Health Study were women nurses. The study didn’t include men. I don’t think men can be included in the study because the study was about the effects of contraceptives.


Bennett, J., Briggs, W. L., Triola, M. F. (12/2012). Statistical Reasoning for Everyday Life, 4th Edition. [VitalSource Bookshelf Online].

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Boston College

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Thanks, good work

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