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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

David K Blough
STAT 220
Seattle Campus

Basic Statistics

Objectives and pitfalls of statistical studies. Structure of data sets, histograms, means, and standard deviations. Correlation and regression. Probability, binomial and normal. Interpretation of estimates, confidence intervals, and significance tests. (Students may receive credit for only one of STAT 220, STAT 221, STAT 311, and ECON 311.) Offered: AWSpS.

Class description

This course is offered online.

This course is a non-mathematical introduction to the basic ideas and methods of statistics. You will learn about the numerical and graphical description of data, correlation and regression, sampling, and inference. The purpose of these statistical methods is to help us give informed answers to important questions. Does the new drug work better than the old one? Do high levels of animal fat in the diet cause certain types of cancer? Does watching too much television cause a decline in children’s reading skills? Are state lottery games fair? To answer questions like these, we need more than opinions: we need data and a consistent way of analyzing that data. That is what statistics is all about.

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Recommended preparation

Your course will be available March 23, 2001. To access the course materials, go to Click on the "Log On" link on the left side of the page.

You will be prompted to enter your User Name and Password. You User Name is your UW Student Identification number. The temporary password is password. When you have successfully logged on, you will be prompted to change your password. Please write down your new password in a secure place.

Click on the "My Courses" link under "Student" options on the navigation bar on the left side of the page to view a link to your course. Click on the course name to view the course syllabus, which includes links to the lessons and assignments for the course.

For detailed instructions on accessing your course and using UW Online, please go to

The required text for this course is Freedman, David, Robert Pisani, Roger Purvis, and Ani Adhikari. Statistics. 3d edition. New York: W.W. Norton and Co., Inc. 1997

View the introduction to the online course at For a tour of the online course environment, go to

Class assignments and grading

Since you will be working independently in this course, it is essential that you read the text carefully and submit one assignment each week. The only exceptions to this are the two weeks prior to the midterm and final exam. To help you with this, each lesson in this guide lists several "Key Questions" that should give you a sharper focus in reading through the chapter sections. Even though you won’t be handing these in, you are strongly encouraged to do them as you read through the chapters in the text.

When you submit the required problems, you should provide a neat, well-organized presentation your work, and a well-identified answer. Bare answers alone will not receive credit. If you cannot solve a problem, an on-going online discussion group is available to ask questions and receive help. I will respond to posted questions there on a daily basis. In addition, I will be available online one hour each week for real-time interaction.

The written assignments are designed primarily to help you learn the course mate-rial and to give you a measure of your understanding of the material. Remember that well-organized, complete homework assignments make excellent review material for the exams. You should submit all assignments to me by campus mail. Please include a self-addressed return envelope with necessary postage.

The exams will be closed-book, but you may bring one 8˝-by-11-inch page of notes in your own handwriting (both sides). You may also bring an ordinary hand-held calculator. Programmable or graphing calculators will not be allowed. The first exam covers Chapters 3 through 14. The final exam is comprehensive.

Your final grade for this course will be based on the following:

Written Assignments--20 percent
Midterm Examination--40 percent
Final Examination--40 percent

The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Additional Information
Last Update by Joan L. Mc Carter
Date: 03/23/2001