Do you believe what the U.S. government said about Osama bin Laden's death is true? Take the survey! >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
A few weeks ago President Obama released news that Osama bin Laden was killed by DEVGRU in his three story mansion in Abbottabad, Pakistan. Pictures of the compound where he was hiding and one in particular of his bedroom with a pool of blood on the floor have been released.
However no photographs of Osama's body have released or leaked to the public. There are a few fakes floating around on the internet that look real though.
It was also said that his body was properly "buried" in the ocean and that DNA evidence was taken to confirm that he was killed. This has lead many to believe much of the government's story is false and that Osama was not really killed.
Because this can be such a controversial topic, a friend and I decided to use it as the topic for our final project in AP Statistics. We wanted to take a sample of individuals at a shopping center in our area, asking them "Do you believe the government's claims about Osama bin Laden's death?" and we would then group each person's answer based on their ethnicity. Then we would have an Arab friend of ours ask the same question to a sample of people in the same shopping center. We would then use a chi-squared test of independence to test the hypothesis that when the question was asked by a person of Middle-Eastern decent, peoples of most or all ethnicities would change their proportion of yes answers. This would provide cause to believe that the ethnic background of the interview can create a bias in the response of the subjects, especially on such a controversial topic as this.
When we submitted our proposal, our statistics teacher naturally thought this type of survey was a bit too racy, and warned us, but decided to allow us to follow through with it otherwise. So we went to the nearest major shopping center, a mall a few miles away, and stood outside one of the main entrances asking our question.
Unfortunately, after taking a decent sample size, we realized that one demographic of peoples was blatantly missing from our survey, and this demographic might have been one of the most interesting to get a sample of. We couldn't continue sampling as we were, because without that one group (I'm not going to say which) the whole synopsis of our survey was ruined. We also couldn't just go somewhere else and continue sampling, because that would mess with our data in unforetold ways, and we couldn't just stop because a report of our data was due the following morning.
Our only option was to quickly modify our survey and continue sampling. We decided that the best way to do this was to instead group people by their age, whether they were younger or older than 30 years of age, and use a two proportion z-test to see whether there was a difference between these two groups on the opinion of the government's story about Osama bin Laden's death.
Switching to this was a very good idea, because we were able to gather enough data to perform the statistical testing in a relatively short amount of time, leaving the rest of the day for us to do the two proportion z-test and write the report.
But one can never gather enough data to produce a completely accurate estimation of the population's opinion, so I decided to post it here to see if I could gather a little bit more data. It's completely voluntary (duh) but it would be cool if you could answer the survey over there >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
I will post the complete results with the survey and statistical test in a week or so. Also, if you feel like it, go ahead and post a comment stating your ethnicity and what you answered in the survey, just for the hell of it.