STAT 20: General Information

I shall cover in class all the material in the text (in slightly different order). See the schedule. You can read the text before or after the corresponding class, as you prefer.

The homeworks dealing with a week's lectures are due in class on the following Tuesday (e.g. the homework for week 1 is due on Tuesday September 7, in week 2). It is important to ``keep up" with the class. Graded homeworks will be returned in Labs.

The course is designed to use a minimum of mathematics, but is not a ``Mickey Mouse" course -- there are some hard ideas involved. So be careful to keep up. If you like math formulas, try our upper-division introductory course, STAT 131A. If you want more hand-holding (lab quizzes, etc) try the easier version of this course, STAT 2.

You will need a (very basic) calculator for the arithmetic on homeworks and exams. But you may not use a ``statistical calculator", because you have to show your work. And questions are often designed so you cannot just plug into a formula, but actually have to think.

On homeworks and exam questions:

(i) for questions involving calculations, show your work

(ii) for questions asking for an explanation, a concise paragraph is invariably enough.

The labs (i.e. discussion sections) are intended as an opportunity for you to ask questions and obtain elaborations of what's been done in class, with further examples.

Exams will be ``open notes" in that you can bring anything in your own handwriting (i.e. class notes) but not books or handouts. Make and bring a copy of the 3 statistical tables at the end of the text.

Grading: 50% final, 15% each of two midterms, 20% homework.

Note: Attending the final at the scheduled time is mandatory -- no rescheduling.

Study tips.

(a) While reading the text, it is a good idea to work some of the exercises within the chapters. Most are quick, and the answers are in the text. Note those you've done, and save others for studying for exams.

(b) Written homework solutions will be posted outside 334 Evans. Dept policy is that we do not distribute written solutions. It is not a good use of time to mindlessly transcribe the posted solutions; rather, look at problems you got wrong, try again to do them, and then check your answer against the posted solution.

(c) It is a good idea to make your own list of ``key facts", and bring it to exams.