AP Statistics Course Description 2017-2018

John Swanson

CCC Room 16 Phone:

(360) 629-1300 x2216 Email:


Course Design

AP Statistics is a course that is designed to assist students in creating statistical knowledge.  We will cover four main topics this year, they are: exploring data, producing data, anticipating patterns, and inference.  This knowledge is much deeper than how to compute numbers and use formulas, it gets into how to collect and analyze data as well as making decisions based on the results of those analyses.

Since the focus of this course is on how to use and analyze data, rather than memorizing formulas, each student will be given a page of formulas at the beginning of the year that they will be able to use on all work and tests.  This will be the same page that they will get when they take the AP exam.  Students will also be required to use technology throughout the course.  We will be focusing on using graphing/statistics calculators and computer software.  

Primary Textbook

Moore, Starnes, Yates.  The Practice of Statistics, second edition.  New York, NY: W. H. Freeman and Company, 2003.

Students will be expected to read the text before we cover the material so that class time may be used exploring the ideas of statistics and working in groups as opposed to lecturing.

Required Materials

We will be using graphing calculators extensively in this course and each student is required to have their own.  Any graphing calculator with statistical programming is fine, I recommend one from either the TI-83/84 series or TI-89 series.  Those are the types that I am familiar with and the types that the text gives instructions for.

Each student is also required to have a notebook for notes and problems.

Course Projects

The learning of statistics is incomplete until the students can show their ability to plan a study, carry out the study, analyze the data, make conclusions based on their analyses, and finally present that data to a group.  The students will show their ability to do this through four projects throughout the year.  The first two will be started in November and presented in January and March.  These two projects will require the students to design both a survey and an experiment, collect the data from their study, do a small analysis of their data and present their findings to the class.  The second two studies will be presented in June after the AP test (the start times of these two will vary depending on the study).  These two projects will be started much like the first ones, however in these two projects the students will have to do an in depth analysis of their data, make inferences based on those analyses, and again present their findings to the class.  All presentations will be professional in nature and will use both appropriate visuals and vocabulary.

AP Exam

This course is designed to get the students to a competence that they will be able to pass the AP exam and receive college credit.  The exam is on Thursday May 17th  at 12 noon.  I expect most, if not all, students to take the exam.

General Rules and Expectations

In this classroom you are expected to act responsibly.  This includes, but is not limited to:

- Arriving on time each day, ready to work.

- Participating in classroom discussions.

- Using class time appropriately.

- Treating others and their ideas with respect.

- Acting in a manner appropriate to young adults.

- Leaving your personal business out of class.  (Example: NO CELL PHONES!!!)

- And generally following all school rules.

Failure to abide by these few expectations will result in a few consequences including a warning, parental involvement, detention, Saturday school, and/or a referral to an administrator.

Tardies and Absences

You are considered tardy if you are not in your seat and ready to work when the bell rings.  Tardies will be dealt with according to the school policy.  If you are absent for whatever reason, it is your responsibility to get the material and make up work.  Absent work will be handled as per school policy.

Grading Policy

Quiz/Homework – 30% Projects – 20% Tests – 50%

Grading Scale

100 – 92.5%  A 92.49-89.5%  A-

89.49-87%  B+ 86.99-82.5%  B 82.49-79.5%  B-

79.49-77% C+ 76.99-72.5%  C 72.49-70%  C-

<70%  F

In general, this is a fun course to teach and to take (at least that is what former students have told me).  It is unlike any other math course that you have taken and you will learn some interesting concepts in here.  If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.

Mr. Swanson

John Swanson,
Sep 6, 2017, 2:29 PM