Welcome to Probability and Statistics.
AP Probability and Statistics is a two semester course. It is taught in a 90-minute block schedule. This class meets for five 90-minute classes every six days. The primary textbook for the class is: Stats: Modeling the World 3rd Edition by authors Bock, Velleman and De Veaux. In addition, supplementary materials include newpaper, magazine, and articles found on the internet that pertain to the topic being studied. Students are required to have and use a TI-83 or TI-84 calculator.
The classroom contains twenty-five desktop computers on which students will be learning to program in the R programming language and Matlab environments for the purpose of analyzing and solving problems in the course content. The skills (Performance Indicators) are: constructing a sample space; determining the total number of outcomes in a sequence of events using appropriate counting principles; accurately computing permutations and combinations; computing and using factorial notation; determining the number of outcomes of a sequence of events using a tree diagram; solving enumeration and finite probability problems; demonstrating through hands-on activities an understanding of the concepts of probability; using experimental or theoretical probability to represent and solve problems involving uncertainty; computing probabilities based on addition and multiplication rules; computing conditional probabilities applying Baye’s Theorem; collecting, organizing and describing data; formulating and solving problems that involve collecting and analyzing data; making inferences, predictions, and convincing arguments that are based on data analysis; constructing, drawing inferences, and reasoning with charts, tables and graphs that summarize data from real world situations; representing situations with tables and graphs and explore the interrelationships of these representations; developing an appreciation for statistical methods as a powerful means for decision making; summarizing data using measures of central tendency, variation and position; creating and interpreting stem-and-leaf plots; creating and determining box-and-whisker plots; designing a survey and assessing the validity of the results; employing various simulation techniques to estimate probabilities; using sampling and recognizing its role in statistical claims; understanding the difference between a biased and an unbiased sample; understanding the concept of a random sample; using caution when conducting surveys and designing questionnaires; accurately computing correlations and regression lines; using curve fitting to predict from data; determining if two variables are related and the strength of their relationship; understanding the meaning of the measures of correlation; constructing a scatter plot from data; understanding the concept of a random variable; computing probabilities accurately based on knowledge of binomial distributions, Poisson distributions, and normal distributions; Use the Central Limit Theorem to solve problems involving sample means for large and small samples; understanding the difference between discrete and continuous distributions; use the normal distribution to approximate the binomial distribution; create and interpret discrete probability distributions; create and interpret normal probability distributions.
At the very least, students seeking to enroll in the course should have successfully completed a course in Algebra II.
Staff Member: Steven MacDonald
My name is Steven MacDonald. I am a 1973 graduate of Lawrence High School. I have been teaching here for thirteen years. It has been my first and only teaching assignment. Prior to teaching, I worked in a variety of positions in high tech including: Applications Engineer, Systems/Network Engineer, Software Engineer. I have undergraduate degrees in Psychology (UMass Lowell), Electrical Engineering (Merrimack College), and I have two graduate degees from Boston University (Computer Science) (Mathematics Teaching)
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need to buy a textbook?
No, A textbook will be supplied to you for use. The text is a course requirement as you will need it in order to complete your assignments: Stats: Modeling the World, Bock, Velleman, DeVeaux 3rd Edition..