Basic Applied Statistics
STAT 200

Spring 2005, Mon.Wed.Fri. CRN 12909 (10:00 in CL 332) or 13228 (12:00 in CL G8), 4 credits
Department of Statistics
University of Pittsburgh

Instructor Dr. Nancy Pfenning
Office Cathedral 2710
Phone 624-8729 (statistics office, leave message with secretary)
  521-8349 (home, if urgent, before 10pm)
  624-8336 (during office hours)
Office Hrs. Mon. Wed. Fri. 11:15-11:45, Thurs. 12:00-1:30 or by appt.
StatTutor StatTutor Labs are available here; the first pair of problems, on displaying and describing distributions, should be completed by choosing the module on Credits and Shoe Sizes; use with Internet Explorer, not Netscape. The second pair is on body size and campus residence, and corresponds to recitation the week of February 15. The third set, in Module 3, contains 4 problems, and corresponds to recitation the week of April 5. The fourth set, in Module 4, contains 4 problems, and corresponds to recitation the week of April 19.
StatTutor Demo StatTutor for guests may be accessed by non-students who are interested in trying it out.
Stat Lab for hours of operation and names of TAs on staff, see schedule. Lab is in 435 Cathedral (take stairs up from Bigelow side of Cathedral)
  Avoid times when the lab is reserved
Free Tutors Contact the Academic Support Center 648-7920 or visit their website and refer to Math Assistance


  • 12/1/04 Practice Final handed out in class; here are the solutions
  • Additional Office Hours during finals week: Dr. Pfenning: CL 2710 Monday, April 25 from 9:00 to 9:30 ; Tuesday, April 26 from 11:30 to 1:30; Yao Zhang Wednesday 12:00 to 1:30 in CL 2600
  • Kaleab will not hold his usual Thursday office hours on April 21st; instead, he will hold them Tuesday April 19th from 3:00 to 5:00 in CL 2617
  • Additional Office Hours before Midterm 2: Tuesday, April 5 in Stat Lab (435 CL) from 12:00 to 2:00 (Matt) and 3:00 to 4:30 (Kaleab). Kaleab may cancel his Thursday office hours this week.
  • 3/25/05 Practice Midterm 2 handed out in class; see solutions .
  • 02-08-05 Read coincidence stories of our class members! or from the fall of 2004 or spring of 2004 or class of 2003 or class of 2002 or class of 2001 or class of 2000
  • 2-4-05 Practice Midterm 1 handed out in class; see solutions .
  • Because recitations with MINITAB intro took place 2nd week of classes instead of 1st, the Extra Credit after Lecture 3 may be turned in Wednesday, Jan. 19 instead of Wednesday, January 12.
  • 2004 Survey data: survey04.txt. a tab-delimited text file, is now available;
  • Spring 2005 Survey data: SemesterFile.txt. a tab-delimited text file, is now available;
  • To download it into MINITAB, type ctrl A to highlight, ctrl C to copy, start up MINITAB, type ctrl V to paste it. If it asks about delimiters, click OK.
  • Here is a brief guide to MINITAB 13 Basics , which includes examples of all the most commonly needed display, summary, data manipulation, and inference procedures. MINITAB 13 will remain in use in our Stat Lab 435 CL until April 2005.
  • Here is a brief guide to MINITAB 14 Basics , which includes the same types of examples as those for MINITAB 13, just slightly different wording for many of the menu selections and procedure details. MINITAB 14 is used in other campus computing labs, and is featured on the student CD for $5.
  • 8/30/04 MINITAB is available at all campus computing labs, such as Cathedral, Forbes Quad, Benedum, and of course the Stat Lab. If in addition you would like to have MINITAB on your PC, Pitt's Software Licensing Service at 105 Bellefield Hall (behind Heinz Chapel) is now offering MINITAB CDs for only $5 a copy (be sure to have your student ID with you)! Otherwise, a free fully functional demo can be downloaded from BUT it will only run for 30 days, so consider waiting until later in the semester!
  • Recitations on the following dates will be held in the Stat Lab 435 CL (enter on Bigelow side of Cathedral, take steps up to 4th floor): January 11, 13, 14; February 15, 17, 18; April 5, 7, 8; April 19, 21, 22 except the Friday 11 am recitations, which are to be held in the Cathedral Computer Lab CL G27 on those dates (Jan 14, Jan 21, Feb 18, Apr 8, Apr 22)


This is a course for students who wish to learn basic methods in order to analyze simple studies and experiments. This course will present the basic methods of applied statistics, utilizing an easy-to-use interactive statistical computing package called MINITAB. Students will be provided with readily understandable and intuitive descriptions of statistical analyses. The topics to be covered include: basic descriptive statistics for univariate and bivariate data, very elementary probability theory, random samplings from populations and random allocation to experimental treatments, sampling distributions, concepts of confidence intervals and hypothesis testing, tests of means in one-sample, two-sample, paired-sample and standard analysis of variance contexts. Categorical data analysis will also be discussed. Most students taking this course will probably not pursue further formal undergraduate study in applied statistics.


MATH 0031 (Algebra) or equivalent. No Comp. Sci. background needed.


Homework,computer lab problems, quizzes, two midterms, and a comprehensive final exam.


11 Homeworks 190
12 Lab Problems 60
Best 10 of 11 Quizzes 100
Midterm 1 150
Midterm 2 200
Final Exam 300
Total 1000
Extra Credit max 50

Course Grade

90-100% A; 80-89% B; etc. Plusses are assigned to the students at the top of each grade range and minuses to the students at the bottom. None of us can know in advance if an individual student will be a "borderline case"; completing extra credit assignments (specified in lecture notes) throughout the semester can help you to optimize your chances for the best possible grade. These are to be handed in to me by the following lecture; no late homeworks or extra credits will be accepted.


Utts and Heckard: Mind on Statistics, 2nd ed., Duxbury Press

Lecture Notes

Handed out weekly in class; also available for copying in Math/Stats library 4th floor Thackeray


10:00 Lecture
  • Tuesday, 9:00-9:50 CL 302 [CRN 13175]
  • Tuesday, 10:00-10:50 CL 302 [CRN 13181]
  • Tuesday, 11:00-11:50 CL 302 [CRN 13186]
  • Tuesday, 2:00-2:50 IS 406 [CRN 13170]

Instructor: Kaleab Abebe, email Office Hours: Thursdays 1:30-4:30, CL 26th floor

12:00 Lecture
  • Thursday, 4:00-4:50 CL 227 [CRN 13232]

Instructor: Yao Zhang Office Hours in Stat Lab 435 CL Mondays 11-1 and 4-7

  • Friday, 9:00-9:50 IS 411 [CRN 13237]
  • Friday, 10:00-10:50 IS 411 [CRN 21235]
  • Friday, 11:00-11:50 IS 411 [CRN 13241]

Instructor: Matt McLean Office Hours in Stat Lab 435 CL Wednesdays 5-7, Thursdays 9-12

Recitations will concentrate on the use of MINITAB (our computer package) and on the clarification and review of lecture material. All quizzes except Quiz 11 will be administered in recitation. In addition, individual questions, especially those pertaining to the homework assignments, may be addressed.

Note: The material in this course is cumulative in nature. Thus, it is important not to fall behind in your reading or assignments or you will find yourself lost. If you are confused, see me or your recitation instructor for help.

Note to Students with Disabilities: If you have a disability for which you are or may be requesting an accommodation, you are encouraged to contact both your instructor and Disability Resources and Services, 216 WPU (412) 648-7890, as early as possible in the term. DRS will verify your disability and determine reasonable accommodations for this course. See their website

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