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This worksheet helps students use a graphing calculator to create a scatter plot and make a line of best fit.

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Finding the Line of Best Fit with Technology

We have learned how to fit a trend line to a scatter plot and find an equation of the trend line. In

this activity we will use the calculator to perform both tasks. The trend line you will find with

the calculator is called the regression line or line of best fit.

a. Enter X data in L1 and the Y data in L2.

b. You can graph these points by turning on a STAT

PLOT, choosing a scatter plot, and using L1 and

L2 for the lists. See figure 2 below.

c. To see your scatter plot, you first need to set your

window. Look at the range of your X and Y data

to determine your window. It is always a good

idea to set your window a bit bigger to see all the

points. See figure 3 below.

d. Hit the GRAPH button to see the scatter plot. See

figure 4 below.

Figure 1 Figure 2 Figure 3 Figure 4

e. Your calculator can find the equation of the line of best fit through a process called linear

regression. This is a statistical calculation, so the command is found in the STAT CALC

menu 4:LinReg(ax+b). Note that the calculator uses a for the slope and b for the y-

intercept. Hit ENTER to bring the command to the home screen and ENTER again to run

the LinReg(ax+b) command. This command is shown in figure 5 on the next page.

Figure 5 Figure 6 Figure 7 Figure 8

Player Height Weight

Kareem Abdul-

Jabbar

86 266

Larry Bird 80 220

Wilt Chamberlain 85 275

Patrick Ewing 84 255

Magic Johnson 83 255

Michael Jordan 78 215

Scottie Pippen 79 228

Isaiah Thomas 73 182

Name: Date: Page 2 of 2

Activity 5.3.1 Algebra I Model Curriculum Version 3.0

The output of the LinReg(ax+b) command is shown in Figure 6. a 7.03 is the slope of the

regression line and b 332.45 is the y-intercept of the regression line. Using these values, the

equation of the regression line is . To graph the regression line, type the

equation into the Y= menu as shown in figure 7. Hit Graph. The regression line will appear in

the same window as the scatter plot as shown in figure 8.

The statistics r

2

and r in the LinReg(ax+b) measure the correlation between the two variables.

r is called the correlation coefficient. It measures the strength and direction of the linear

relationship between two variables. The sign (positive or negative) of r indicates the direction

of the linear relationship. If r is positive, the slope of the regression line is positive, and if r is

negative, the slope of the regression line is negative. The value of r measures the strength of the

linear relationship. If r is close to 1 or -1, the data has a strong linear relationship.

Scatterplots are shown below with their corresponding values of r.

Perfect

Positive

Correlation

High

Positive

Correlation

Low

Positive

Correlation

No

Correlation

Low

Negative

Correlation

High

Negative

Correlation

Perfect

Negative

Correlation

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