Three good books about India

I’ve been pondering a family trip to India, so I’m reading books about India like a fiend. Maximum city: Bombay lost and found, by Suketa Mehta I couldn’t put this one down. Part autobiography, the author is an Indian who returns to India after spending some time in America. He intersperses anecdotes about his life…

Many of our analyses are probably based on crappy data

This thought crossed my mind once again when I read this passage from India: A Portrait (p. 118): The politician Harold Cox, who had taught mathematics at Aligargh Muslim University, was once advised by a judge in India: “Cox, when you are a bit older, you will not quote Indian statistics with that assurance. The…

Racist teachers in India

This kind of study is difficult to refute, given the strong internal validity (random assignment of caste to exams) and external validity (actual grading versus a laboratory setting). The study involved an exam competition in which teachers graded exams that included a cover sheet listing randomly assigned characteristics (caste, gender, and age) about the students.…

Parental selection effects in education, India edition

Earlier this week, a father in the city of Mathura was caught strapping his 8-year old daughter to a motorcycle after she refused to attend school to take her assessment. Tied with a multi-strand rope to the back of a bike, onlookers captured images of the trussed girl, her bare feet hanging low, scraping the…

What parents in India will do for good grades

Images of parents and family members clambering up school buildings and clinging on window ledges to pass cheat sheets to their children have left authorities in despair. The incident took place on Wednesday in the state of Bihar, where students were writing their year-end grade 10 examinations. http://www.cnn.com/2015/03/20/asia/india-cheating-parents-school-tests/

More evidence that quants rule the world: Indian love edition

An Indian bride walked out of her wedding ceremony after the groom failed to solve a simple math problem, police said Friday. The bride tested the groom on his math skills and when he got the sum wrong, she walked out. The question she asked: How much is 15 plus six? His reply: 17. http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/groom-fails-math-test-indian-bride-walks-out-of-wedding/2015/03/13/50d8c69e-c94e-11e4-bea5-b893e7ac3fb3_story.html