Tuesday, July 21, 2009

More data visualization - this time about books

Ever wonder where the proof was about reading ..ummm, erotica being bad for you. Here it is. Check this link out.

An interesting study was done that went somewhat like this.
- Get the ten most frequent "favorite books" at every college using the college's Network Statistics page on Facebook. Possibly these books represent the intellectual calibre of the college.
- Get their SAT/ACT scores for the colleges.
- You can now get a relationship between types of book read and scholastic achievement

The results are pretty impressive, though still somewhat dubious. According to the study, Classics is usually good for you (agree with that), Erotica is way bad. Controversially, so is African-American literature and chick-lit. In the link, check out the visual that stacks the book by genre.

Make what you want about this, but be careful between causality and correlation.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Causality and correlation is one set of problems with the conclusions here. The other thing to worry about is reporting biases.

How many people would be bold enough to report in Facebook that they read porn? Also, the absence of good non-fiction also points to some reporting biases.