EXAMPLE OF A WELL WRITTEN REPORT

Tuition at the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Colleges for 1999-2000
by Jane Doe

Introduction.

College students are almost always concerned about tuition costs, which may guide their choice of a college.  As a college student in Minnesota, I was curious about the tuitions at private, undergraduate colleges in the state.    How do the tuitions compare?  How does my college (Gustavus Adolphus College) compare to the others in the state?   For this report, I have analyzed the 1999-2000 tuition for thirteen private, undergraduate colleges in the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC).  The MIAC sponsors championships in 25 sports (13 for men and 12 for women).  The colleges in the conference are members of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division III, which means that financial aid is based only on need rather than athletic ability.

The 1999-2000 tuition ranged from $13,340 to $23,469, with the median tuition $16,353.  The Gustavus tuition of $17,480 is above the median, although not the highest of the MIAC colleges.

Methods.

The 1999-2000 tuitions for all colleges and universities are published by the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), appearing online at http://nces.ed.gov/.  The NCES is a federal entity responsible for the collection and analysis of educational data in the United States and other countries.  The 1999-2000 tuition for the MIAC colleges was obtained from this web site and is summarized in the Table in the Appendix.

An individual is a MIAC member college, with the variable of interest being the 1999-2000 tuition, measured in dollars.  I used a stemplot to display the distribution of 1999-2000 MIAC tuition.  Because of the presence of outliers, I measured the center and spread of the distribution with the median and interquartile range (IQR), respectively.  Outliers were identified using the Tukey's outlier rule.  StataQuest 4.0 was used for all analyses on an IBM compatible computer in Olin 031.

Results.

The distribution of 1999-2000 MIAC tuition was skewed toward high values (Figure in Appendix).  The median 1999-2000 MIAC tuition was $16,353, with an IQR of $2,115.  According to the outlier rule, there were two outliers (Carleton, $23,469 and Macalester, $20,688).

Discussion.

About three fourths of the MIAC colleges had 1999-2000 tuition between $15,000 and $19,000, with the middle half of the tuitions between $15,365 and $17,480.  Half of the 1999-2000 MIAC tuitions were less than $16.353.  Carleton and Macalester had the highest tuitions, while Concordia and St. Mary's were lowest.  My college, Gustavus, has lower 1999-2000 tuition than only three of the MIAC colleges (Carleton, Macalester, and St. Olaf).

References.

Anagnoson, J. Theodore, & DeLeon, Richard E. (1996).  StataQuest 4.  Belmont, California:  Wadsworth.

Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.  http://www.stkate.edu/miac/index.html (April 1, 2000).

Moore, David S. & McCabe, George P. (1999).  Introduction to the Practice of Statistics.  New York:  W. H. Freeman.

National Center for Education Statistics.  http://nces.ed.gov/ (April 1, 2000).

NCAA Division I, II and III Membership Criteria.  http://www.ncaa.org/about/div_criteria.html (April 1, 2000)

Appendix.