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Math 241 - Elementary Statistics

General Syllabus

Last updated June 7, 2022

Accessibilty Services: If you are a qualified student with a disability seeking accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), you are required to self-identify with Accessibility Services, You will have to submit your accommodation requests to your instructor and to the Department of Mathematics for their approval, and return the completed forms to Accessibility Services. Students who quality under the ADA and need extra time for tests or a distraction-free environment for tests will have to schedule their tests at the Testing Center.

Prerequisites: Math 105, Math 151, Math 155, Math 161 or an ACT score of at least 28 is prerequisite for this course. Also, students in this course should also be able to read and write English.
Course Delivery: This course will take the "flipped approach". Class notes written as Word documents and PowerPoint slides will be provided in Moodle for each topic in the course. You will be expected to review these items before class. The class period will be devoted to answering questions on 1) the topics for the day, 2) procedures used to complete assignments, and 3) problems scheduled for upcoming tests. Presentations on different topics will be posted as soon as they are completed. Occasionally, I will revise the notes and presentation for a topic after they have been posted to correct errors or present material in a clearer fashion.

Attendance: With the exception of test days, I will call roll every class near the start of the period. Please remind me if I forget to call roll. If you miss a class, for whatever reason, you are responsible for learning the material presented in class on that day. Examples of most everything we do are available in the text, in the PowerPoints, in the class notes, or on this website. Grades do tend to decrease as the number of absences increase, so keep this in mind if you are thinking of missing a day.

Text: Allan G. Bluman, Elementary Statistics: A Step By Step Approach, A Brief Version, 8th edition. You will need the textbook in class almost every period to see problem statements and find table values.

Calculators: The TI-83, TI-83 Plus and TI-84 Plus are the preferred calculators for this course. These calculators are very user-friendly and have built-in procedures for computing basic statistics, finding regression lines, computing coefficients of determination and correlation, finding confidence intervals and doing hypothesis testing - all of which we use in this course. The use of these calculators will be demonstrated in class. Also, the text gives some explanation and my website gives more explanation on using these calculators.

Other calculators are acceptable if they do all the operations listed above. I can only help with other calculators during my office hours, and I will need to see your calculator manual to do this.

You will need one of these calculators for all three tests and the Critical Thinking Assessment.

Statistics Software: You will need to use statistical software like Minitab, SPSS, or R to do Assignment 4, the Mini Projects and the semester project for this course. These programs are available in Fayard 120 and the open lab in Fayard 126. Minitab has a 30 day free trial or a six-month rental for $32.99. The program R can be downloaded for free, but is not easy to learn. Rguroo is a user-friendly software program based on R. Rguroo has a 14-day free trial or a six-month rental for $11.99. SPSS is available in most computer labs on campus, but it is harder to use. The Statistics With Technology section of this website has information on how to use Minitab, SPSS, R and Rguroo for many of the tasks required in this course.

Minitab is the statistics software program I prefer, and I will use it for all in-class demonstrations of statistics software.

Assignment and Project Submissions: You will submit all assignments and projects to Dr. Gurney as email attachments. You can use almost any format for Assignment 1. Assignment 2 should be submittled as an Excel file. All other assignments, all Mini Projects and the Semester Project should be submitted as Word documents.

When I receive any work as email attachments, I will send you an email saying I have received it. If you do not receive an email saying I have received your work within a day of the due date, you should contact me to see if I have received your work.

Assignments (ASM’s): There are 4 assignments worth 20 points each. These assignments cover basic procedures used throughout the semester. The assignments are described in more detail in the Assignments section of this website. You will receive more detailed instruction for these assignments after the underlying material is discussed in class. Due dates for the assignments are shown on the class calendar. Assignments that are more than one week late will receive an 8-point penalty.

Mini Projects (MP's): There will be 4 Mini Projects worth 60 points each. For each Mini Project, you will be given a data set and asked to find certain statistics and create confidence intervals for the quantitative variables, make two differrent graphs using statistics software, and run two different hypothesis tests using a calculator or statistics software. Due dates are shown on the class calendar. Mini Projects that are more than one week late will receive a 10-point penalty.

Tests: There will be 3 tests worth 60 points each. Learning dates are shown on the class calendar. More detailed test information may be found at the Test and Final Exam Descriptions section of this website. You have one week to take test without penalty. Tests taken more than one week late receive a 10-point penalty. Tests can be made up during my office hours, or we can schedule other times if necessary. The last day to take any test for credit is the last Thursday before finals week.

Semester Project: The semester project is worth 120 points.  The project is described in detail in the Semester Project section of this website.  Statistics software must be used for all graphs.  The semester project is due on the last Thursday before finals week.  Project turned in on the last Friday before finals week will be worth at most 90 points. Projects turned in on the last Saturday before finals week will be worth at most 60 points. Projects turned in on the last Sunday before finals week will be worth at most 30 points. Projects turned in on Monday of finals week or later will be worth zero points.

Final Exam: The final will contain 30 problems worth 2 points each for a total of 60 points. All problems on the final will involve the basic concepts of statistics. The first fifteen problems will be multiple choice. These problems are designed to assess how well sutdents have learned standard statistical material. The last fifteen problems will be short answer, and will check for a deeper understanding of statistical concepts. The last 15 problems of the final exam are described in detail in the Test and Final Exam Descriptions section of this website. The day and time of the final exam are shown at the top of the first page of the course syllabus.

Course Grade: All points a student receives during the semester are added to give a single point total.  Course grades are then determined using the following scale. This scale is based on the 600 points possible from 3 Assignments, 3 Learning Checks, 3 Mini Projects, the Semester Project, the Critical Thinking Assessment and the Final Exam.

Point Total

612 &

544 to

476 to

408 to

0 to

Course Grade






The table below shows the points possible and the percent of the final grade for each non-bonus item used in determining your final grade.

Grade Item Four Assignments Four Mini Projects Three Tests

Semester Project

Final Exam Total
Points 80 240 180 120 60 680
Percent 11.7%


26.5% 17.6% 8.8% 100%
Essential Info Questionnaire (EIQ): This questionnaire contains 20 questions worth one point each, for a total of 20 bonus points.  The Essential Information questionnaire will be available on Moodle the first day of class and must be completed one week later.
Pre-Final Grade Estimates: When estimating grades during the semester for midterm grade reports, or student athletes, or if students ask me for an estimate, I do not include bonus points.  They will be added to your point total after you have taken the final exam, when the course grade for the semester is determined.

Last Day to Drop: The last day to withdraw from the course is stated in the course syllabus. If you need to drop this class, you must fill out and turn in the required forms yourself.

Missed Tests, Late Assignments and Late Mini Projects: If you have an excuse for turning in an assignment or mini project late or not taking a test, SEND ME AN E-MAIL on or before the due date or test date with (1) a BRIEF description of your excuse and (2) the date when you plan to turn in the assignment or take the test.  Do not attach documents to your e-mail excuses.

Outside Help Sources: 1) The textbook.  2) The instructor's website. 3) The instructor during office hours.
4) Qualified tutors. Tutors for Math 241 can be found on the webpage shown below.

Any math tutor will usually know the material on the first test, but most math majors have not had the opportunity to learn the material in Test 2, Test 3 and the Final Exam. For help on Test 2, Test 3 or the Final Exam, I suggest you find a tutor who has taken Math 241 with me or who has a degree in statistics.

Classroom Behavior: Remember that some students in this class are serious about learning the material in this course.  If, on some days, you do not want to be in class or would rather talk to your classmates than listen to the discussion of the material, please leave!  

You are encouraged to ask questions and express ideas in class, but this should be done in an appropriate manner. If you have questions, ask the instructor - not the student next to you.  If the instructor is not looking in your direction, just say the word “Question” to get his attention. 

Turn off all cell phones, pagers and similar devices during class. Finally, no printing is allowed in Fayard 120 during discussion of course material or while reviewing for tests or the Final Exam.

Moodle Use: You will access the Essential Information Questionnaire on Moodle. Class notes will be posted on Moodle when they are available. Also, any significant announcements I make in class, like changes in test dates or due dates, will be posted in the announcement section on Moodle.

I usually grade and return tests taken in class by the next class period. I will try to have Assignments and Mini Projects graded and returned within one week of when they are submitted. If you want your current point total during the semester, send me an e-mail and I will send you your current points.

That being said, about once every three weeks I will try to post whatever points you have on Moodle.

Audience for Your Work: A major goal of this course is to teach you to communicate statistical results in a clear manner to people who may not have had statistical training. Picture the person who reads your results as you on the first day of this class.

When writing final answers or conclusions, do not use fractions, Greek letters, statistics symbols or E’s in numbers. Using fractions, Greek letters, statistics symbols or E's in numbers in your final answers will cost you points on Assignments, Mini Projects, Tests, and the Final Exam.

Other than graphs, do not copy and paste the output of statistical software programs into your Mini Projects or Semester Project. I am usually just looking for specific numbers for confidence intervals and hypothesis testing, and software programs tend to add a lot of extra material around the desired numbers. Also, lists and tables of numbers are usually not given in the format I want.

Academic Integrity: Students are expected to maintain the highest standards of academic integrity.  Behavior that violates these standards is unacceptable.  Examples of unacceptable behavior include copying other people's work and communicating with other people while taking a test or the Final Exam.

Method for Success: After teaching college mathematics for more than 40 years, the best method I know for succeeding in a mathematics course is to work many examples of each different type of problem.  You should spend at least two hours working problems for every hour you spend in class, and you should be doing this on a regular schedule during each week of class. 

If you need a certain grade from this course, you should check your point total with me frequently, and get help immediately if you have problems working assignments, taking tests on time, or completing your projects. 

There is not much I can do to help if the first time you ask for help is two weeks before the last day of class, and you say you don't know what is going on in the course.     

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