MATH 108 Spring 2006 Syllabus


Dr. Sean Ho
(604) 513-2121 x3209
Office Hours: Daily 10-11am, Neu5
Class location:
TR 08:00-09:15, Neu13


This course is an introduction to applied statistics addressed, in particular, to students specializing in the field of nursing. The focus is on developing the conceptual aspects of the subject rather than the mathematical foundations and assumes no prerequisite except elementary algebra. Topics include descriptive statistics, probability, the normal, t-, chi-square and F-distributions, confidence intervals, hypothesis testing, correlation and regression. Applications are directed towards health and biological studies.


By the end of the course students should be able to
  • understand the principles underlying statistical procedures
  • use the most common statistical tools
  • demonstrate the use of statistical reasoning in health and biological sciences


A minimum of C in BC Math , Principles of Mathematics 11. Note that credit cannot be obtained for both MATH102 and MATH108. Students with a weak math background or who have not taken a math class for a number of years will need to do extra work on their own and perhaps find a private tutor (see TWUSA).

Required Text

Samuels and Witmer, Statistics for the Life Sciences (3rd ed.), Prentice Hall, 2003. ISBN 0-13-041316-X
This text should be available at the campus bookstore.


Letter grade assignment follows the TWU percentage to grade equivalents except that >=85% and <95% is an A; 95% and above is an A+.
Homework 20% Weekly (~10 total)
Midterm 1 20% Thu 5 Oct
Midterm 2 20% Tue 7 Nov
Final Exam 40% Sat 16 Dec 9-11am


  1. Homeworks are due in-class by the start of class each Thursday. NO LATE HOMEWORKS except for extenuating circumstances. Homework turned in after the start of class up to 5pm on the due date (including coming to class late) will be penalized 10%; after that they will not be accepted and will receive a zero mark. If you cannot come to class to turn in your homework, have a friend hand it in for you or make prior arrangements with the instructor.
  2. Note that only a few questions from each homework will actually be marked. Study groups are encouraged, but the final draft that you hand in must be your own work. All work must be shown for full marks.
  3. A scientific calculator is required; graphing or special statistical functions are not required. Please have a separate calculator from your cell phone or PDA, since these are not allowed during exams.
  4. During in-class quizzes/exams, all of the following are not permitted and should be left in your closed/zipped bag and put on the floor:
    • Textbooks, notes, cell phones (turn off), laptops, PDAs, electronic dictionaries
  5. During in-class quizzes/exams, your desk should be clear except for some blank scratch paper, your pencil/pen, and your calculator. Please make sure you have your own calculator; sharing of calculators is not permitted.
  6. Students who miss more than 25% of class sessions may be barred from taking the final exam [2006-2007 Academic Calendar p.18].
  7. In case of inclement weather, the TWU campus conditions will be announced on local radio stations and posted on the TWU website; for more details please see