DrDave's blog

E-cigarettes: not just for quitters?

There has been some talk in the press recently regarding a new US study about e-cigarettes, which seems to show that e‑cigarettes can contribute to the recruitment of young people (16+) to smoking.  The value of this study is that it was a longitudinal study, where the same respondents are followed up at a later date.
http://archpedi.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=2436539&resultClick=3

Factoids

Q: Does anyone smoke in a car when you are in it too? A: 20% of children said yes #SHEUres

According to the BBC, a plan to ban smoking in cars carrying children is due to be put to a vote in the House of Lords today.

Another BBC story quotes James Cant, head of the British Lung Foundation Scotland, pointed to a 2010 NHS study in England which found that about 18% of children aged 11 to 15 were exposed to smoke in cars.

A tour of statistical techniques

(To the tune of: There's a hole in my bucket)
Me: I've done a correlation matrix (grid), using Pearson's correlation coefficient (r), for a selection of variables, using my statistical software SPSS.
Statistician: Yes, but having done that, some of the variables are not continuous, so you should use Spearman's correlation coefficient (rho).
Yes, but having said that, SPSS just uses Pearson's coefficient anyway, if the sample size is as large as this one.

The curious incident of paper questionnaires in the time of the rise of computing

Ten years ago, I thought we would be doing everything online by now!

But I fairly often get told something like:

"There's 2 year groups to get through, 6 classes each, so we need to book the IT suite for 12 slots, and it's already booked up, and the classes are 30 but the IT suite has just 25 computers, 24 of which work... Just send us a parcel of questionnaire booklets, and we can do it all in one morning!"

Also, the best-laid plans of a school can oft gang agley because of power failure, sulky networks, flooding, winter vomiting, or ...

Word Search spreadsheet

Here's a Word Search maker. 

It's a Excel 2010 spreadsheet.  You can print directly from the Excel sheet or paste from it into your favourite word processor.

It has macros enabled; the macro makes it easier to see what you are doing and to produce an solution grid (all the distractor letters are randomly generated, and are shown as white-on-white for the solution grid).

I'm sure you can do this sort of thing for yourselves, but you might find it useful if you haven't done it for yourself just yet...

Risk assessment

Why did I get into the field of health education? Lots of reasons, surely, but here is one.

Sources of information and support for young people

@ncbtweets conclude from their survey of 263 young people:

Guidance from the PSHE Association

I had a brisk and positive chat with Nick Boddington on the phone this morning, during which he gently reminded me of the existence of some documents that the PSHE Association have developed about the place of PSHE under the new OFSTED inspection arrangements.

I am happy to share with readers:

Guidance around new Ofsted inspection arrangements (from January 2012)

which is one of the latest of the Association's free resources:

Bullying: turning the curve at last?

For over 15 years, we have been asking secondary pupils across the country the same question: Do you ever feel afraid of going to school because of bullying?  The pupils are offered four responses, Very often, Often, Sometimes and Never.  The proportion saying anything other than 'Never' veries between 20% (Year 10 males) to over 30% (Year 8 females).  And it's been that way for a long while.

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