Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs):
Who may participate and what exactly constitutes a team?
A team consists of three or four undergraduate students. If an institution has too few (or too many) students to form teams of 3-4 people, the organizers will place any extra students into a team from another institution so that they can participate in the competition.
Is there a registration fee?
For MUDAC 2016, a registration fee of $50 per team will be imposed to help cover expenses.
How do I register my team(s)?
Information on how to register for the competition can be found at www.mudac.org/registration.
Registration information for MUDAC 2016 will be available in February.
Is there a registration deadline?
Yes. For MUDAC 2016, all participants must register and pay the registration fee by Friday, March 18. Due to space limitations, we may close registration at an earlier time.
Is there a limit on how many teams a school can enter?
Initially, a maximum of two teams per school will be allowed to register. Requests for additional teams will be considered after the registration deadline if there are still spaces open.
What resources will be provided for each participant?
Each team will be provided with
- An independent workspace (most likely a classroom)
- Snacks and beverages
- Lunch on Saturday and Sunday
- Breakfast on Sunday
- Dinner on Saturday evening
Will sleeping arrangements be made for the students?
No formal sleeping arrangements will be made for students; however, we encourage students to bring a sleeping bag / pillow so that they can get some rest over this 24-hour period.
Will sleeping arrangements be made for faculty advisors?
Yes. We have reserved a block of hotel rooms which will be available for faculty advisors. Faculty advisors are responsible for covering the cost of their own room.
What else should teams bring?
- Laptops with software installed
- Reference materials (helpful textbooks, notes from past classes, etc.)
- Lots of energy!
Who are the judges?
Judges will consist of faculty advisors from the various institutions and representatives from the local outside organization for whom the data is being analyzed and potentially other industries.
What are the competition guidelines?
All participants and advisors must sign a confidentiality agreement prior to the start of the competition, which will be done when teams check in on Saturday morning.
The integrity of the competition is of utmost importance, so faculty advisors will be able to provide only limited guidance to their students throughout this competition. The expectation is that students, not faculty advisors, are directing and completing the work. Finally, to ensure that all teams are making progress toward meeting the competition goals, all participants and advisors will meet as a large group at specific time periods to obtain a "data briefing."
What level of statistics background is necessary?
This competition is data-intensive, so teams should have completed at least an introductory course in statistics and also have the ability to work with large amounts of data in some standard statistical software package (e.g., JMP, Minitab, R, SAS, or SPSS). Teams with a strong background in statistics (e.g., students have taken an advanced course covering regression, ANOVA, or categorical methods) will not necessarily do better. Past competition winners impressed the judges by being innovative in their approach, producing creative summaries and graphics, and communicating their outcomes in an understandable way.