Guidelines for Solutions to Problem Sets
Math 141: Intro Statistics; Fall, 2019
Weekly problem sets are a critical part of this course: mastering Statistics requires getting plenty of practice choosing what needs to be done, doing it, and then clearly explaining what your results mean.
I am a firm believer that one of the best ways of building your understanding is to explore the ideas with other students. I therefore encourage you to discuss the problem sets with other students.
For collaboration to be effective,
- think through each problem first
- only then meet with others to discuss the concepts
- You may find it useful to also discuss how to use Minitab Express with others, but since getting a feel for how Statistics software works is one of the key things you're learning in this class, you should each be working on your own Minitab worksheet
- In the end, the final product that you turn in should represent your own understanding, your own use of Minitab Express, and should be written in your own words
With that in mind, here are some specific guidelines:
Please get support if you need it! A lot goes on in class, and it would be surprising if you understood everything the first time around.
- All solutions should be typed and stapled. Typing will allow you to smoothly incorporate output from Minitab Express
- Put your name and date on the first page of each assignment; clearly label each problem with the chapter and the exercise number. One way is to label Problem 10 from Chapter 4 as 4.10
- Solutions must be well-written, complete, and clear. Use complete sentences to justify your results
- A list of answers without explanation will receive no points
- A good test to follow when writing up a problem:
Would a student who took Intro Stats last year be able to follow your written explanation without talking to you or looking anything up in the book?
- Any collaborations should be noted by the relevant problem. (This includes collaborations with a tutor or with me).
Indicate who you worked with and the type of collaboration (e.g. equal contributions, got a quick tip, gave a quick tip, got substantial support, gave substantial support).
- Under no circumstances should you turn in work that relies on Minitab Express calculations done by another student or use another student's Word or Minitab file
- If there is any doubt that the work you handed in is not your own (beyond the noted collaborations), you will receive a zero for the assignment. This includes, but is not limited to, problems which are identical or nearly so
- Work on the problems through the week. I collect them only once a week to allow some flexibility in your schedule, but the material reflects a week's worth of learning, and the length reflects a week's worth of work. Saving them up for the day before the problem set is due will both mean that you are getting less out of the intervening classes and will make for an unpleasant Wednesday.
Everyone learns differently; in office hours, I can tailor my explanations to you (or at least, to a smaller group).
There will also be peer tutors ready and willing to help in the Filene Center -- this is a great place to go for another perspective, to see (in some cases) non-math majors model how they learned Stats, or to get help with a step or two on your homework.
If you find yourself asking for help with every question, or needing 10 minutes of attention at a time, then you will be much better off coming to office hours.
Department of Mathematics and Computer Science
Science Center, Room 1306
Norton, Massachusetts 02766-0930
TEL (508) 286-3973
FAX (508) 285-8278
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