Math 1050

A Non-Calculus Based Introduction to Probability and Statistical Methods

(Formerly MATH150)

Fall/Winter 2008-2009

Course Topics and Objectives

This course is an introduction to probability and statistics for students who are not required to be strong in mathematics. This course does NOT count towards a mathematics major and is not open to students who are enrolled in, or have credit for MATH1010 or MATH150.

Although there is no formal prerequisite for the course, this is a course in quantitative methods and basic mathematical skills are required.

Course Objectives

The goals of this course are:

Topics covered

Descriptive statistics, probability, confidence intervals, tests of hypotheses, regression, contingency tables, analysis of variance, non-parametric procedures.

A complete list of topics covered and their tentative scheduling is available in the complete course schedule.


Elementary Statistics , by Mario F. Triola, William M. Goodman and Richard Law. Second Edition, Addison Wesley Longman.

Learning System

Any material relevant to the course as well as updated grades will be available on myLearningSystem.

Voting Clickers

This device, purchased through the Trent Bookstore, will enable you to reply electronically to questions asked during class, and is required. The same clicker will work in all courses using them. Clickers must be registered on-line using MyLearningSystem.


Due to the considerable amount of numerical work involved in this course, students should acquire a calculator, preferably with built-in statistical function keys, and should have it with them during every lecture and workshop.


Computer-based methods of statistical analysis will be an integral part of assignments. The use of Statdisk (available with the textbook) and Excel will be explained throughout the course. Students may use the statistical package of their choice for assignments.

Course Structure

Lectures: There will be three lecture hours per week as indicated in the class timetable. Lecture hours will be used for the presentation of course material, for questions related to the course material and for class participation using ``clickers." Lecture hours will be used for midterm examinations as well, as indicated in the schedule.
Workshops: There will be ten problem workshops through the year. The workshops will be used for practice problems, questions regarding assignments, and preparation for quizzes and midterm exams. Students will choose one of six possible time slots (three time slots, separated into two groups which alternate fortnightly) and register accordingly via MyLearning System. Attendance to workshops is not mandatory, but is highly recommended.

Course Evaluation

Assignments: There will be ten graded assignments during the year. Assignments must be submitted in the instructor's drop box (GCS 336) according to the due date and time. No late assignments will be accepted. The average of the best nine assignments will contribute 25% of the final mark.
Quizzes: There will be seven quizzes scheduled during the year. Quizzes will be available on MyLearningSystem for a few days, and must be completed by each student individually according to their own schedule. Quizzes can only be completed during the allowed time frame and can only be taken once. The average of the best six quizzes will contribute 10% of the final mark.
Course Participation Course participation will be graded through clicker voting and through data collection via MyLearningSystem. Each question answered in class (whether right or wrong) will be awarded one mark, and each survey answered via MyLearningSystem will be awarded a predetermined number of marks. Twenty misses are allowed during the year (equipment malfunction, sickness, etc.), so that the overall grade for course participation is calculated as 5% x (total awarded marks)/(total possible marks-20). Students can use ONLY their own clicker, or the computer will not assign the marks for voting.
Midterm examinations: There will be three in-class exams. Each exam will contribute 10% of the final mark.
Final Examination: There will be a final three-hour examination during the final examination period. The final examination will contribute 30% of the final mark.
Assignments:         25%
Quizzes:         10%
Course participation:         5%
Midterm exams         30%
Final exam         30%

Academic dishonesty:

Academic dishonesty, which includes plagiarism and cheating, is an extremely serious academic offense and carries penalties varying from failure in an assignment to suspension from the University. Definitions, penalties, and procedures for dealing with plagiarism and cheating are set out in Trent University's Academic Dishonesty Policy which is printed in the University Calendar. Since clicker records are used to compute a portion of course grades, the use of a clicker other than your own is an academic offence. In lecture, possession of more than one clicker, or that of another student, will be seen as intent to commit an academic offence. More details of what is considered to be plagiarism in MATH1050 can be found on the course MyLearningSystem page.

Access to instruction:

It is Trent University's intent to create an inclusive learning environment. If a student has a disability and/or health consideration and feels that he/she may need accommodations to succeed in this course, the student should contact the Disability Services Office (BL Suite 109, 748-1281, as soon as possible. Complete text can be found under Access to Instruction in the Academic Calendar.