Gary Smith
office hours: MW 12:15 - 1:15, Carnegie 218
telephone: (909) 607-3135
e-mail: gsmith@pomona.edu

Economics 57b: Economic Statistics (MW 11:10 - 12:25)


Learning Statistics by Doing Statistics

"I hear and I forget.
I see and I remember.
I do and I understand.
"

This course has been designed to teach statistical reasoning. The required textbooks are Gary Smith, Introduction to Statistical Reasoning, and Gary Smith, Standard Deviations: Flawed Assumptions, Tortured Data, and Other Ways to Lie with Statistics, (both available through several online sellers). I will also give you two supplemental chapters, Probability and Multiple Regression.

You can use this free user-friendly computational software or a commercial statistical package, such as STATA, or a spreadsheet program, like Excel. Also try my StatQuiz and StatGames software. Please e-mail me with any and all questions, but assignments cannot be submitted electronically, for example, as e-mail attachments.

The class schedule is below. Please read each assigned chapter before class and please come to every class. Class discussions will assume that you have read the assigned chapter beforehand. If you miss more than one class, your numerical score for the course will be reduced by 1% for each additional class you miss.

This course must be taken for a letter grade. Course grades will be based on the following:

40% team projects Randomly selected 2-person teams will work together on eight projects with the results presented in class. You can choose a project from this list or make up one of your one, but you must let me know your choice ahead of time so that we don't have 6 teams doing the same project. The oral presentations can utilize handouts, the class projector, and other visual aids. The class and I will give each speaker constructive written suggestions afterwards. The presentations will be evaluated based on their effectiveness in conveying the intended information. They should be organized, clear, and engaging so that the audience pays close attention, understands what you are trying to tell them, and retains the main points well enough to explain them to others. Avoid "um," "like, and "you know." Energy is good. Fiddling with pens, papers, and buttons is bad. Maintain eye contact and smile.

0% textbook exercises Five assigned exercises from each chapter of Introduction to Statistical Reasoning and the two supplementary chapters; you may discuss the general material with other students and with me, but the specific work should be your own. Answers will be posted on this web site after class on the day the assignment is due. Your homework will not be graded, but can help you learn for the material—and homework question sometimes show up on tests.

20% midterm The midterm examination is to be taken on Monday, March 1, from 11:00 am to 12:15 pm, and will cover Introduction to Statistical Reasoning Chapters 1 through 5, the supplementary probability chapter, and Standard Deviations Chapters 1 through 8 and 10. This will be a closed-book test emphasizing concepts, understanding, and applications. Calculators are not allowed, but you can use an 8.5 by 11 sheet of paper with notes written on one side.

40% final exam The final examination is to be taken on Friday, December 17, from 9:00 - 11:30 in the morning, and will cover all the course material. The final will be similar to the midterm in structure, but twice as long. Calculators are not allowed, but you can use an 8.5 by 11 sheet of paper with notes written on both sides.

If you want extra time on a test, you can buy time at a price of 1 point a minute; for example, if a test is handed in 10 minutes after the scheduled finish time, 10 points will be subtracted from the test score.


Class Schedule
  Monday Wednesday
Aug 30, Sept 1 introduction Lecture: ISR Chapter 2, SD Chapters 1, 5
September 6, 8 Lecture: ISR Chapter 2, SD Chapters 1, 5
Ch2 HW: 7, 14, 18, 26, 34

Lecture: ISR Chapter 3, SD Chapter 7
Ch3 HW: 2, 10, 34, 40, 50

September 13, 15

Chapter 3 projects
Lecture: ISR Chapter 4, SD Chapters 2-4
Ch4 HW: 8, 18, 34, 38, 50

Lecture: Supp. probability chapter, SD Chapters 6, 8, 10
Chapter 3 projects

September 20, 22

Lecture: Supp. probability chapter, SD Chapters 6, 8, 10
Supp. probability HW: 24, 26, 44, 47, 51

Lecture: ISR Chapter 5

Sept. 27, 29

Chapter 5 projects
Ch5 HW: 6, 12, 16, 28, 34

Chapter 5 projects
midterm review
October 4, 6 midterm examination

Lecture: ISR Chapter 6

October 11, 13

spring recess

spring recess
October 18, 20

Chapter 6 projects
Lecture: ISR Chapter 7, SD Chapters 11-18
Ch6 HW: 12, 26, 28, 44, 50

Chapter 6 projects
Lecture: ISR Chapter 7, SD Chapters 11-18

October 25, 37

Lecture: ISR Chapter 8
Ch7 HW: 6, 10, 30, 36, 48

Lecture ISR Chapter 8
November 1, 3

Chapter 7 projects
Lecture: ISR Chapter 10
Ch8 HW: 8, 18, 34, 36, 48

Chapter 7 projects
Lecture: ISR Chapter 10

November 8, 10 Lecture: ISR Chapter 11
Ch10 HW: 2, 6, 32, 36, 40

Lecture: ISR Chapter 11
November 15, 17

Chapter 8 projects
Lecture
: regression examples

Chapter 8 projects
Lecture
: regression examples
November 22, 24

Lecture: The AI Delusion
Ch11 HW: 6, 8, 14, 32, 50
Chapter 10 projects

Lecture: regression review
Chapter 10 projects

Nov 29, Dec 1

Lecture: Regression to the Mean
Multiple regression HW: 6, 28, 37, 40, 41
Chapter 11 projects

Chapter 11 projects
December 6, 8

Lecture: Review
multiple regression projects

Lecture: Review
m
ultiple regression projects

ISR: Introduction to Statistical Reasoning

SD: Standard Deviations

 



Old Tests