Introduction to Statistics (MAT/SST 115.03 2008S)

Assignment 1: Administrivia and Survey

Assigned: Wednesday, 23 January 2008
Due: 1:00 p.m., Friday, 25 January 2008
No extensions!

This assignment is also available in PDF.

Summary: In this assignment, you will gather information about the structure of the course and then respond to a few basic questions about the course and about yourself.

Purposes: To encourage you to learn about the structure of the course and the course web. To give me a bit more information about you.

Expected Time: One to two hours for parts one and two.

Collaboration: Each student should turn in his or her own version of this assignment. However, you may certainly work with other students as you review the course materials and answer the questions. You may discuss the assignment with anyone you wish. You may obtain help from anyone you wish, but you should clearly document that help.

Submitting: Email me your answer. More details below.

Warning: So that this assignment is a learning experience for everyone, I may spend class time publicly critiquing your work.


Part One: The Course

As you might have been able to tell from the first few day of class, I have a wide variety of opinions about learning and teaching in CS which are reflected in how I run the class. You can (and should) learn more about these perspectives from the course Web. In this assignment, you will review the course Web and answer some basic questions.

1. Read

2. Write up answers to the following questions:

a. Suppose you get everything correct on a homework assignment. What grade should you expect to receive on that assignment?

b. What happens if you turn in homework late?

c. How can you figure out what assignments you have due?

d. When can you work with other students and when can you not work with other students (for this class)?

e. How can you obtain help from me?

f. Other than simply selected Print from the File menu, are there other things you should do (or think about doing), when printing documents for this class?

g. Which of the reasons for using R in this class did you find the most compelling? Which did you find the least compelling? Why?

h. How does the style of learning in this class differ from the style of learning in other kinds of classes? (Or does it?)

i. How can you take advantage of the different parts of each Topic in Worksthop Statistics?

j. Why do you think I gave you this assignment?

k. What questions about the class do you have that aren't answered by the Web site or book?

Part Two: About You

As I start each class, I like to learn a little bit about each student. Hence, I provide a short survey. I find that knowing more about my students helps me teach a better class.

a. What is your name?

b. What is your major (or intended major)?

c. Who is your academic advisor?

d. What courses are you taking this term? Please include meeting times. I prefer course names to course abbreviations.

e. Why did you register for introductory statistics?

f. Tell me a little bit about your any aspect of your background that might be relevant for this course, such as your prior experience with mathematics.

g. What do you hope to learn or gain from this course?

h. What are your biggest concerns for the course?

i. Most surveys like this ask you to list your five favorite books, movies, TV shows, CDs, chia animals, buildings on campus, professors, or whatever. I'll give you a little more freedom. Pick a category of objects (it can be one that I listed, it can be one that I didn't list), and list your five favorite objects in that category.

j. What else should I know about you?

k. Since I'm asking you all of these questions, it's only fair that you get to ask me some questions. What, if anything, would you like to know about me?

Part Three: Start Working

Do all of Topic 1 and the preliminaries of Topic 2 in Workshop Statistics.

Important Evaluation Criteria

I will evaluate your work on the seriousness with which you approach the assignment and your correctness in answering the questions. (And, yes, particularly clever or amusing answers are likely to earn you a modicum of extra credit.)

Submitting Your Homework

Please submit this work via two separate email messages. The first should be titled Stats 115.03 Course Details and should contain your answers to part one of this assignment. The second should be titled Stats 115.03 Survey Answers and should contain your answers to part two of the assignment.

Please send your work as the body of an email message. I don't like attachments, and prefer not to receive them when they can be avoided.

Disclaimer: I usually create these pages on the fly, which means that I rarely proofread them and they may contain bad grammar and incorrect details. It also means that I tend to update them regularly (see the history for more details). Feel free to contact me with any suggestions for changes.

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