Welcome to STAT 362

Introduction to Computer Statistical Packages

Instructor: James Gentle

If you send email to the instructor, please put "Stat 362" in the subject line.

Content and Objectives

This course is an introduction to the use of statistical software packages in data analysis. The main package to be used will be SAS® . Data manipulation with SAS and other software packages will be addressed. The statistical topics covered include basic univariate descriptive methods including graphics, methods of inference for univariate statistics, and regression analysis.

The prerequisite for this course is an introductory course in statistics, such as STAT 250, that covers descriptive statistics, the basics of estimation and hypothesis testing, and an introduction to regression analysis.

The objectives of the course are to to enhance students' knowledge and understanding of some basic statistical methods, and to develop students' proficiency in the use of SAS for basic statistical analyses and for manipulating statistical datasets.

Students taking the course should have these same objectives plus the objective of getting credit for the course with a good grade.

If (and only if) you have the necessary prerequisite and you have these objectives and are willing to do the necessary work to achieve them, then the course may be right for you.

Texts and Other Materials

The required texts for the course are

Parts of most of the lectures will be available online, but you are expected to attend class and are responsible for material covered in class whether or not the material is available online. You may get notes from other students for material missed whenever it is not possible for you to attend a class. This is your responsiblity; not the instructor's.

Accessing SAS

SAS is a very large and expensive software system consisting of a base module and a number of separate packages. Most usage of SAS is over networked computers in a business, an educational institution, or a government agency. Although the full SAS system can be run on a standalone PC, most personal copies of SAS consist of only some of the modules and/or of stripped-down modules.

SAS software is available on the PCs in several computer labs on campus, including those in the Johnson Center and Innovation Hall.

There is a version of the SAS software called SAS® Learning Edition. The current version can be purchased at the GMU Patriot Store for $125. It has all of the abilities required for the homework in this course, but we may occasionally discuss functions that are not included in the Learning Edition.

Assignments and Grading

There will be weekly programming assignments.
The most important thing is to keep up with the assignments.

There is no "extra credit" work that a student can do toward the end of the semester to make up for several weeks of doing nothing. Keeping up from the beginning is especially important for students who "need the course to graduate". I treat students as responsible adults.

Performance on the assignments will constitute 20% of the total grade in the course. The grades on two assignments will be dropped; therefore, no assignments will be accepted late. You are allowed to work with other students and to receive help from any available source on your assignments, but what you submit must be your own work.

There will be a final exam and three quizzes. The grade on one quiz will be dropped; therefore, no make-up quizzes will be given. Work on the quizzes and exam will be done alone and in accordance with the Honor Code.
Performance on the quizzes will constitute 50% of the total grade in the course.
Performance on the exam will constitute 30% of the total grade in the course.
The quizzes and the exam will be closed-book, closed-notes, and closed-computer.

Spring 2007 Schedule and Assignments