LEAP Statistics

This web-site is designed to assist students who are in the Organizational Management or Ministry Leadership majors, or one of the graduate programs, who are taking statistics in an accelerated format. The next five weeks will be perhaps the most demanding since you began the LEAP program, not because the material is more difficult than previous courses, but because most students bring to a statistics course less experience in the academic discipline than they do to other courses in their major. However, hundreds of students have mastered the concepts and skills required of this course, and so can you!

 

Course Announcements

 

NOTICE: Class will be held in the new Health & Science Center (HSC) on the main campus, just East of the Library. HSC room 254 is the Computer Lab located on the second floor, North end of the building. We have to hold the class here because of the number of students – the 6710 Computer Lab is just not large enough for everyone to have their own computer. Don’t worry, students will still have a long enough mid-session break for a quick run to the Aerie or Starbucks.

ALSO: If you will use the computer lab computers in class, I recommend that you bring a USB thumb-drive or some other method of saving the work you do in class to take it home to finish. We almost always get a head start on your homework. Alternately, you can email your class work to yourself and pick it up at your home, but a thumb-drive is much better.

Course Description Academic Catalog: (Satisfies the Quantitative Reasoning requirement.) An elementary course in descriptive and inferential statistics emphasizing procedures commonly used in measurement, evaluation, and research in the social and behavioral sciences, as well as in business, education, and theology. Included are the basic concepts of sampling distributions, probability, statistical inference, t-tests, ANOVA, Chi-square, correlation, and regression. Students must have access to Microsoft Excel and the Internet.
Course Objectives
  1. Students will demonstrate their ability to approach problems from a statistical perspective through a series of research situations in which they identify the research question (hypothesis) and determine the best statistical analysis to utilize. Students will also interpret and apply the outputs from various statistical calculators.
  2. Students will demonstrate statistical literacy by being able to recognize, recall, and apply basic statistical terminology, concepts, symbols, calculations, and formulas through a variety of matching question styles.
  3. Students will demonstrate their ability to select and apply appropriate statistical techniques to describe, organize, and analyze data by being given a research setting.
  4. Students will demonstrate their ability to apply statistical reasoning to common issues that are routinely encountered in written and visual mass media.
  5. Students will demonstrate their ability to use the statistical functions of MS Excel spreadsheet program’s statistical functions.
  6. Students will demonstrate the ability to utilize computer-based calculators for the basic statistical tests.
Statistical Calculators This Introduction to Statistics class utilizes Microsoft Excel and various online statistical calculators to provide data analysis because they (or equivalent programs) are readily accessible in nearly all business offices, are provided to all students by NU’s Microsoft Software Agreement, and allow the class to concentrate on the principles involved rather than on manual calculations. HOWEVER, the professor acknowledges that some of Excel’s data analysis routines have made assumptions over which users do not have any options and that may inject small errors into the results. It is understood that businesses which demand high accuracy in the data they analyze and intermediate/advanced statistics courses use computer programs specifically designed for the appropriate data analysis. NU students have access through computer labs to SPSS.
Basic Course Work Arrangement Prior to first class:

  1. Configure Microsoft Excel for Statistical Analysis (see link below)
  2. Read LEAP Week 1 page overview
  3. Download LEAP Week 1 Notes, linked on the LEAP Week 1 web page
  4. Complete the assignments referenced in the LEAP Week 1 Notes.
  5. Attend the first class session, being prepared to answer questions from the Notes.

Prior to the second class:

  1. Complete LEAP homework Problem Set 1.
  2. Read LEAP Week 2 page overview.
  3. Download LEAP Week 2 Notes, linked on the LEAP Week 2 web page.
  4. Complete the assignments referenced in the LEAP Week 2 notes
  5. Attend the second class session, being prepared to answer questions from the Week 1 Student Notes.

 

Class Attendanceand Preparation Students are expected to fully attend each class session. In the event of an emergency, students are expected to contact the instructor as soon as possible to see if there is any way to receive credit for the course or receive an incomplete grade to be completed later under the direction of the professor. The Incomplete Grade Policy is restricted to events that occur due to sickness and other emergencies. Consult the LEAP Student Guide for additional information.

It is also expected that students will spend between 15 and 20 hours reviewing materials from the previous session, doing the assigned homework, and preparing for the next session. Often students have not had to spend that much time between classes in their courses prior to taking Statistics because the courses were in their field of experience – that is usually not the case for statistics. Be prepared to spend a lot of time in this class, the same as other students must for all statistics classes.

Course Resources Configuring Microsoft Excel for Statistical Analysis – follow these instructions:

The following sites will provide additional assistance as you prepare for and progress through the course.

Math Review Links Good to do prior to the first class session to get your mind thinking numbers. Take a few minutes to see how you do on them.

Help With Microsoft ExcelGood to review prior to first class session; critical to review prior to second class

 

 

Take a look at these sites:

Fun Stuff With Funny Statistics

If You REALLY need a Textbook to read Some students may feel the need to reference an actual book along with the various web references made throughout the course. Because of the unique structure of the course and extensive use of Excel, to date the statistics professors have not been able to identify a text that is worth students’ money and so have tied weekly lessons to various web sites. However, there are many textbooks that might be of assistance for basic explanation of terms and principles. One of which is available from Cliff Notes:

Voelker, David. CliffsQuickReview Statistics. Wiler Publishing, Inc., 2001. [ISBN: 0-7645-6388-2]

This small book is available from many bookstores or from www.cliffsnotes.com

Course Grading Students complete four formal homework assignments and several questions in each weekly assignment. The final grade is made up of the following points:

  • Homework Assignment #1: 25%
  • Homework Assignment #2: 25%
  • Homework Assignment #3: 25%
  • Homework Assignment #4: 25%

TOTAL: 100% = 4.0

Grade Explanations
Range Quality of Performance
3.9 – 4.0
(A)
Superior performance in all aspects of the course with work exemplifying the highest quality. Unquestionably prepared for subsequent courses in field.
3.5 – 3.8
(A-)
Superior performance in most aspects of the course; high quality work in the remainder. Unquestionably prepared for subsequent courses in field.
3.2 – 3.4
(B+)
High quality performance in all or most aspects of the course. Very good chance of success in subsequent courses in field.
2.9 – 3.1
(B)
High quality performance in some of the course; satisfactory performance in the remainder. Good chance of success in subsequent courses in field.
2.5 – 2.8
(B-)
Satisfactory performance in the course. Evidence of sufficient learning to succeed in subsequent courses in field.
2.2 – 2.4
(C+)
Satisfactory performance in most of the course, with the remainder being somewhat substandard. Evidence of sufficient learning to succeed in subsequent courses in field with effort.
1.9 – 2.1
(C)
Evidence of some learning but generally marginal performance. Marginal chance of success in subsequent courses in field.
1.5 – 1.8
(C-)
Minimal learning and substandard performance throughout the course. Doubtful chance of success in subsequent courses.
1.2 – 1.4
(D+)
Minimal learning and low quality performance throughout the course. Doubtful chance of success in subsequent courses.
0.9 – 1.1
(D)
Very minimal learning and very low quality performance in all aspects of the course. Highly doubtful chance of success in subsequent courses in field.
0.7 – 0.8
(D-)
Little evidence of learning. Poor performance in all aspects of the course. Almost totally unprepared for subsequent courses in field.
0.0
(E)
Complete absence of evidence of learning. Totally unprepared for subsequent courses in field.