Analyzing And Mapping Historic Weather Data Lab


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Analyzing and Mapping Historic Weather Data Lab (30 points)

For this lab, you will analyze weather data for three cities over a 50-year period. You will use Microsoft Excel to create a spreadsheet and graph. Note: If you do not have Microsoft Office, click here to access OPEN OFFICE software. To learn how to use Microsoft Excel, click here or here.

  1. Select three cities with available weather data back to the year 1965. Remember that you will need to cite your data sources. You will be collecting weather data for five data points:
    1. The average annual rainfall (inches)
    2. The average annual snowfall (inches)
    3. The average monthly high temperature
    4. The average monthly low temperature
    5. Cooling degree days
  2. For each city, collect the weather data listed in Step 1, and enter the data into the Excel spreadsheet.
  3. Plot your data for each city using the Excel Chart Wizard, choosing the x-y scatter plot. Include all of the weather data that you collected for each city. Save the spreadsheet with your plot to your computer. 

    Note: To learn how to create a chart (graph) in Excel, click here.


  4. Analyze the data by calculating the standard error. The standard error is a statistical method used to determine the statistical accuracy of the data compared to the mean of the data. This technique is often used to analyze changes in data. 

    Note: To learn how to perform statistical analyses using Excel, click here . To learn how to calculate the standard error of your data in Excel, click here or click here. (Note that these examples are for Excel 2013.)


  5. Add the error bars to your graph for each of the five data points. Standard error bars can indicate if changes in your data are significant. 

    Note: To learn how to do this in Excel, click here. (This example is for Excel 2013.) For older versions of Excel, click here.


  6. ave the spreadsheet with your data, plot(s), and statistical analysis to your computer.
  7. Determine if the changes in your data set are significant:
  • To determine this, examine the error bars for a data point. To do this, you will compare the data from a data point for each of the three cities that you picked.
  • Start with Average Monthly High Temperature. Look at the standard error bars of the data for each of your cities. For our purposes, we will consider the difference in the data to be significant if the vertical separation between the error bars is greater than one-half the height of the error bar.

For each city, discuss the trend that you see in high and low temperatures. For example, do the high temperatures gradually increase, decrease, or show no pattern over the last 50 years? Suggest a reason for this change. Is there a relationship between the high and low temperatures and the rainfall over the last 50 years? Please answer yes or no and explain your answer. For example, if there is a relationship between temperature and rainfall, suggest a reason why this might have occurred. Has there been a change in the type of precipitation in your cities over that last 50 years? For example, did it snow every year for the last 40 years, and now the amount of snow in winter has decreased while the amount of rain has increased? Please answer yes or no and explain your answer. For example, if the type of precipitation has changed over the past 50 years, please suggest a reason. Pick one data point and determine if the data are significant for each of the three cities. Your data may be significant for one city, but not for the other cities. Discuss why you think the data are significant or not significant for each city.Your paper should be 3-4 pages in length and conform to CSU-Global Guide to Writing and APA Requirements. Include at least 1-2 outside references. The CSU-Global Library is a good place to find these references. Your paper will include answers to the questions, as well as the spreadsheet containing the weather data, graphs, and statistical analyses. Remember that your data sources must be cited on the spreadsheet in a References List. It is strongly recommended that you submit all assignments to the TurnItIn Originality Check prior to delivering them to your instructor for grading. If you are uncertain how to submit an assignment to TurnItIn, review the TurnItIn Originality Check – Student Guide for step-by-step instructions.


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