Statistical Methods, Spring 2014

MWF 10:30 - 11:20, R 12:30 - 1:20, Bagby 111

Office Hours: MWF 2:30 - 4:00, TR 2:30 - 3:30

Link To StatsPortal

Lecture Slides

Course Description

Statistics is the science of data:  how valid data is produced, how to explore data to find trends, how to describe data quantitatively, and how to draw valid conclusions from data.  This course delves more deeply into the methods and techniques introduced in Math 121 (Statistics).  We will also introduce the multiple regression (and the associated inference tests) and ANOVA (analysis of variance), as well as other topics.  The course will emphasize hands-on experience with data, and the real-life applications of statistical thinking.  


Math 121 (Statistics), or permission of instructor.

Class Meetings

MWF 10:30 - 11:20, Bagby 111, R 12:30 - 1:20, Bagby 111

Office Hours

MWF 2:30 - 4:00, TR 2:30 - 3:30, Bagby 125

Final Exam Date

Friday, May 2, 9 am until noon.

Text (electronic)

Introduction to the Practice of Statistics, Moore, McCabe, and Craig, 7th edition

Required StatsPortal

I will be running the course using a web-based system called StatsPortal.  Both the text and the homework system are part of StatsPortal.  You should have already received an email from me about signing up for StatsPortal.  You are required to purchase StatsPortal with the online homework system.


A TI-84 or TI-84 Plus graphing calculator is required for this course.  It very good investment, not only for this course, but for other math and statistics courses.  I do not recommend more advanced models such as the TI-89 or TI-92.

Determination of Course Grade

  • two in-class tests at 20% each
  • final exam: 30%
  • homework/quizzes: 25%
  • cultural points: 5%


Two in-class tests will be given.  Tentative dates for the tests are

  • Test 1 -- Thursday, February 27
  • Test 2 -- Thursday, April 10

Final Exam

A comprehensive, in-class final exam will be given on Friday, May 2, from 9 am until noon.


I will assign homework problems daily.  I expect you to do these before the next class period.  The first ten minutes of each class meeting is open to discussion of the practice homework problems.  Approximately once every two weeks we will have a short quiz.  Topics for the quiz will always be announced at least one class meeting in advance.  The quizzes will be based on the assigned homework.

Mathematics Cultural Points

Mathematics is one of the oldest of the academic disciplines, and in addition to its intellectual content, it has a rich history and culture. Mathematics culture points ("cults") are awarded for activities which engage with that culture in a substantive, non-trivial way. You may earn cultural points in a variety of ways, such as attending and reporting on a Math/CS colloquium talk, or solving a Math/CS Problem of the Month. In order to receive the full 5% credit for cultural points, you must earn at least 10 cults. Cults are awarded for the following activities:

  • Attending a Math/CS colloquium, either at Hampden-Sydney or Longwood (+5)
  • Submitting a non-trivial solution to a new Math/CS Problem of the Month, either at H-SC or Longwood (+5)
  • Submitting a non-trival solution to a new problem in a Math Journal (+5)
  • Presenting a paper or poster at a mathematics conference (+10)

To earn cults for a particular activity, a student must submit a brief write-up (approximately one page, word processed) addressing the following topics:

  • A description of the activity and a summary of what the student's participation entailed (e.g. for a colloquium talk this would include a summary of the details of the talk; for a solved problem, this would mean a complete solution to the problem).
  • A description of how the specific activity deepened their understanding and appreciation of mathematics, in particular if it connected to their current course material.

Note that all reports must be word-processed.  Handwritten reports are not accepted.

The number of cults awarded for a specific activity depends on the quality of the write-up.  In grading the cults, you will not receive the full cults score if you do not use proper spelling and grammar in your write-up.  If anything is misspelled or if there is at least one instance of improper grammar, you will not receive the full cults score.

Attendance and Excused Absences

You are expected to attend every class.  See the Hampden-Sydney College Catalog for the College's policies on class attendance.  You assume full responsibility for all material covered during any absence.  A grade of "0" will be assigned for all work missed due to unexcused absences.

Make-Up Policy

  • You will have ample time to complete any homework assignments, so I will not accept any late submissions for these.  Work handed in past the due date will receive a score of 0.
  • If you are sick on the day of a test or in-class quiz, then you must get in contact with me before the test or quiz is given to arrange a make-up.  Failure to do so will result in a 0 on the test or quiz.
  • If you have an official College-sponsored event in which you must participate (such as a varsity sporting event) scheduled on the same day as a test or in-class quiz, then you must arrange with me beforehand to take the test or quiz early.

Laptops, Cell Phones, Tablets, Texting, etc.

  • No use of laptops, tablets, e-reader, etc. in class.  If you have a legitimate need for a device, consult with me outside of class.
  • All cell phones should be turned off during class, or be put in silent mode.
  • No texting or other use of the internet during class please.