Analysis and Interpretation of Psychological Data
|Instructor||Patrick E. McKnight, Ph.D.|
|Office||David King 2064/2065|
|Office Hours||Tues/Thurs 9:30am-10:30am and by appointment|
|Class Location||IN 203|
|Class Date/Time||Tuesday/Thursday 10:30am-11:45pm|
|Teaching Assistant||Lucy Buchholz|
|Important Dates||Please see GMU academic calendar|
Required Textbook: Gravetter, F. J. & Wallnau, L. B. (2007). Statistics for the behavioral sciences (7th ed). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth. An optional study guide is available in book store. Study resources are available here.
Course Overview: PSYC 300 is an introductory course in statistics. By successfully completing this course, you ought to be able to compute and interpret the basic statistical procedures found in social science. Those procedures include measures of central tendency, measures of dispersion, basic probability, measures of association and measures of difference.
Course Format: The course meets twice each week for lecture. During those lectures, I will cover the material in the text as outlined below. Each week you will also be required to attend a lab where my TA will teach you how to conduct the procedures discussed in the lecture that week.
Exams (60%): Every week, a 7–10 question exam will be administered online at this website. Use your G number (i.e,. G123456789) as your username and your Last Name (spelled how you would normally spell it) as your password. In total, there will be 13 exams. You may drop the 2 lowest exams. Please note that the exams cover material from the book, lecture and lab so it is in your best interest to read the book while also paying attention in the lecture and lab. . You may use a calculator, SPSS, computer, book, or any other supporting material you desire, however, you may not use a friend, parent, or any other person to assist you during the exams. I track everything on the exam site so please comply with the GMU honor code. GIVEN THE LIBERAL POLICY THERE WILL BE NO MAKEUP EXAMS UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES.
Lab Assignments (20%): There will be weekly assignments for the lab. I will use only 11 of the 13 assignments to compute your grade. Successful completion of each lab gives you a free 20% of your grade. I suggest you attend lab and turn in your assignments. The only thing required for lab credit is that you make an effort on each assignment. THERE WILL BE NO MAKEUP LAB ASSIGNMENTS.
Experimental Participation (20%): One of the best ways for you to understand statistics is to see where the data come from and then envision how that data might be used to test a hypothesis. Direct exposure to experimental research also prepares you to conduct research of your own, interact with faculty members, and understand the nature of social scientific inquiry. A total of 3 hours of experimental credit (or the hour equivalent for those who opt out of direct participation and wish to attend the experimental lectures) are required to satisfy this portion of your grade. Please see this website for more details. PLEASE DO NOT DELAY SIGNING UP FOR THE EXPERIMENTS IF YOU INTEND TO PARTICIPATE.
Grading: Letter grades will be assigned according to standard cut scores (A: > 90; B: > 80; C: > 70; D: > 60; F: < 60). If your score falls on the high side of the range, I will assign you a “+” and similarly, if your grade falls on the extreme low-end, I will assign you a “-” with the grade.
Cheating and the Honor Code: I expect all students to abide by the GMU Honor Code whereby “Student members of the George Mason University community pledge not to cheat, plagiarize, steal, or lie in matters related to academic work. Specifically, I expect all exams and assignments to be individual efforts unless otherwise noted in writing. GMU honor code violations can result in failure of an assignment or exam, depending on the severity of violation. I report all violations to the Honor Committee without exception.
Disability Accomodations: If you are a student with a disability and you need academic accommodations, please see me and contact the Disability Resource Center (DRC) at 703–993–2474. All academic accommodations must be arranged through that office. Note that this provision includes the range of disabilities, including physical, psychiatric, and learning disabilities.
Tentative Schedule: The following is an ordered list of the topics I intend to cover and the associated readings. Please note that there are no dates associate with these topics. I will proceed when a sufficient number of students understand the material.
- Introduction (syllabus)
- Terms and Notations (GW 1)
- Data and Distributions (GW 2)
- Measures of Central Tendency (GW 3)
- Measures of Dispersion (GW 4)
- Transformations and Distributions (GW 5–6)
- Central Limit Theorem (GW 7)
- Basic Probability Theory (GW 8–9)
- Measures of Difference (GW 10–15)
- Measures of Association (16–17)
- Non-parametric Procedures (GW 18)
Lecture Notes (Updated Weekly)
- Tuesday, November 6th, 2007 - NO CLASS - Due to events beyond my control, I was forced to cancel class on Tuesday. The lab will meet as usual and class will be held on Thursday this week, however, there will be no office hours this week. Thanks for your understanding and patience.
As promised, I am posting the exam results here. Please look over the exam results and send me any questions if you think there are errors. I added a point to everyone’s exam scores for Exam 11. Have a safe and enjoyable break. Do not forget that the 13th exam begins at about 5:30am on Tuesday, November 20th. The items on that exam will be review items so there is no need to worry about studying new material.
Here is a table with the updated exam results. Please check this link weekly until the end of the term to make sure the exam scores accurately reflect your exam performance. I will also post the final scores for exams, labs, experimental participation, and computed total score at the conclusion of the last exam. Please check here if you are concerned about your grade and refer to the syllabus for my grading criteria. If the page contains the same old information then hit refresh on your browser.
The last two exams are now online. They start at 8am on Wednesday, December 5th, 2007 and end on December 13th, 2007 (one second before midnight). There are a total of 24 questions on each of these last two exams. Please take your time. There should be no rush to complete these questions because they are all review items. I will post the complete scores for all the exams I have to date this Thursday and the following Friday (December 14th). You should be able to determine your grade with relative ease. If not, I will post the grades to GMU shortly thereafter so you can check them through your GMU account.
Have a nice holiday and do not hesitate to contact me during the remaining part of the semester should the need arise.
The final grading sheet is available for your perusal. THE LETTER GRADES LISTED ARE NOT OFFICIAL GRADES. Please look over the table and make sure there are no errors. I intend to submit the grades by noon on Saturday. The grades posted on the sheet were based solely on numbers. In some cases, I adjusted upward for students with extenuating circumstances. Note that there were four factors that played a role in your final grade. The three factors listed above (exam performance, lab attendance, and experiment participation) along with signs of improvement throughout the semester exams gave me the opportunity to add extra points. Those “Bonus Points” are added to the sum of the other three factors to determine the grade. I was also extremely lenient on my cut scores (< 60: F; 60–67: D; 68–79: C; 80–85: B; 86–89: B+; 90–97: A; 98+: A+).