Math 138: Statistics, Fall 2009


Instructor: Erin McNicholas

Course Logistics

Room:  Ford 211

 Section 1

Section 2
Phone:  503-370-6590 Room:  Ford 301 Ford 204
Email:  emcnicho(at) Time:  M W F 10:20-11:20 am M W F 1:50-2:50 pm
Homepage: Mailgroup:  math-138-01(at) math-138-02(at)
Office Hours:  Monday & Thursday, 3-4pm, Tuesday & Wednesday 9-10am Textbook:  Stats: Data and Models, 2ed. by DeVeaux, Velleman, & Bock

"He uses statistics as a drunken man uses lampposts - for support rather than for illumination."  ~Andrew Lang


Course Objectives / Big Questions:

You have probably heard the saying `Statistics can be made to prove anything - even the truth.'  In fact, statistics is a very powerful collection of tools used to measure the certainty of our inferences and reveal patterns and trends obfuscated by natural variation.  Statistical analysis is only as valid as the data and assumptions which go into it.  Used incorrectly or without context, statistical results are meaningless.  In this class we will learn to use statistics for illumination. By the end of the course, students should be able to:

  • Understand when and how to apply standard statistical techniques

  • Use statistics to make informed decisions in their other classes and in their everyday lives

  • Design, implement, and statistically analyze the results of an experiment or survey


Course Information & Handouts

Useful Websites

Just for Fun




Homework & Suggested Problems

Free tutoring available in the Math Hearth Sun-Thurs, 6:30-9:30pm
9/2 Read Ch.s 1 and 2, work on homework journal, take class survey
9/4 Read Ch.s 3 and 4, work on homework journal, and complete Turn-in Homework #1 (due Wednesday 9/9)

Homework 1 Key

9/11 Read Ch.s 5 and 6 and work on the homework journal.  You should have completed through Ch. 6 by next Friday (9/18).  Work on Turn-in Homework #2 (due Wednesday 9/16)

Homework 2 Key

9/23 Read Ch.s 7 and 8 and work on your homework journal.  Work on Turn-in Homework #3 (due Wednesday 9/30)

Homework 3 Key

10/8 Read Ch.s 11-13 and work on your homework journal.  Work on Turn-in Homework #4 (due Wednesday 10/14)

Group Exam Solutions

  • Group Exam 1

  • Group Exam 2