I was very fortunate and pleasantly surprised to receive my school’s ‘Top Lecturer 2011′ award last week. The award is an encouragement for innovation in education. Among other reasons, I received the award because of how much the students of last year’s ‘Econometrie 2′ course liked the prediction contest I organized as a class assignment. The competition required the students to model a given ‘training’ data set in order to predict an unseen ‘testing’ data set, using the methods that were covered during the course, with the winners of the competition receiving a bonus to their grade. The contest was set up using Kaggle-in-Class: a free service by prediction competition company Kaggle, which makes this process extremely easy. If you are involved in teaching any courses on statistics or data analysis, I would highly recommend having a look at Kaggle-in-Class!
In addition to Kaggle, I would also like to thank Dennis Fok and Jan Brinkhuis for supporting my development as a teacher, and of course the students who worked hard and made the contest a great experience for everybody!