New Student Course FAQs


Please note that the main site for this course will be on Sakai. Only registered students will have access to Sakai (allow up to 24-hours to gain access to Sakai).

FAQ for Statistics Course

I think these cover most of the questions I get in the weeks prior to the start of the semester. If your question isn't answered here, please send me a note at Hope you are savoring these last few days of break!


1. Can you enroll me in the course? Pretty please!

I’m sorry, but I’m unable to add students to the course due to space restrictions in the recitation sections. Once max is reached, the section will be closed. I know it is a pain, but keep checking Connect Carolina for openings as there are usually some fluctuations in enrollment before and during the first week of classes. We do not maintain a waitlist, nor can we add students who sit in during the first few weeks of class. Registration must occur through Connect Carolina. If you are attempting to graduate in two semesters and still need to take Psyc 270, you should speak with someone in psychology academic advising (

If you are not enrolled, but want to see some of the early class materials, please look below in the section on the first week.

2. Can I place out of the course?

Yes. There is a placement exam offered by the psychology department. Visit for more information.

3. Can I attend recitation at a different time than the one I've registered for? OR I see spots available in the class, but not the recitation time I want.

The recitation sections are intended to provide the opportunity to ask questions in a smaller setting and work together on assignments or optional quizzes. You will also use this time to work on the semester-long research project. It will be important to attend the section for which you are registered. It's possible someone in the course is willing to switch with you. Post on Piazza to look for someone to swap.

4. I tried to switch lab sections, but now I can't add the course back. Help!

Yikes! It's likely that someone's nabbed the open section you found. Unfortunately, I'm not aware of any way to secure a spot without releasing your seat - a dangerous move so close to the start of the semester. The psychology department has a student services administrator who can help with registration issues, but they will not be able to override the maximum seat numbers for the lab/class. I know it's a pain, but someday I'll share with you how we registered in the ice age; it will make you appreciate how slightly less heinous it is now. ;)

First week of Classes & Course Requirements

1. What are the meeting times for the first week?

There will be no recitations held the first week of classes. The first recitation you must attend will be the first full week of classes. You are also expected to attend the larger class meeting in the first week of classes. It is important that you attend class the first week of the semester so that we can get an accurate assessment of enrollment and add students who may be waitlisted or trying to enroll.

2. What assignments are due the first week of the semester?

You will have a few assignments the first week of class. I urge you to complete them BEFORE our first class meeting. You will complete an on-line survey, register for polleverywhere, and read through the syllabus. Information will be posted on Sakai and is on the course schedule.

If you are waiting to enroll, you can still access the syllabus (available on my website), the course calendar (spring, fall) as well as some of the early videos: ,,

3. What are the requirements and what is the typical workload in this course?

You are required to have taken Intro to Psyc before enrolling in 210. There are no other prerequisites. If you have taken a placement exam and placed out of the course, you can enroll in Psyc 270 (for Psyc majors). The typical workload in the course is about 6-9 hours OUTSIDE of class meeting times. There are weekly assignments, quizzes, readings, videos, recitation and class meetings. We want you to succeed in the course, so we offer a number of opportunities to practice the material and ask questions, but we ask that you come to class prepared (there will be quizzes at the start of nearly every class). The class and recitation meetings will be active -- you will be working through problems, answering questions, posing questions and working in groups. There will be very little "lecturing" occurring at the class meetings, rather, the focus will be on targeted discussion of difficult concepts as identified by you and through problem-solving. In other words, don't expect a course where you will show up and be spoken to for the entire time. I think you'll find this method works well for this course.

Books and Software

1. What do I have to buy?

There are no materials for purchase in this course.

Book: Most introductory statistics textbooks cover the same material, so most of these will do if you prefer to do readings. There are a couple of open source books also available for your use. Lastly, I have placed a copy of a textbook at the undergraduate library reserves.

Software: We use SPSS in the course. You can access it through for free. There is one computer in Davis library (2nd floor) that has SPSS installed. This is a good machine to use if you are having difficulty maintaining a connection to the virtual lab. If interested, you can purchase a temporary license for SPSS. Instructions are on the course site. A license is about $45. Again, this is not necessary, but it is an option should you like to have SPSS on your machine.

Calculator: A very basic calculator. VERY BASIC. Not a graphing calculator or even a scientific calculator. Nothing that can calculate statistics or store data. The calculator should have a square-root function. This type of calculator can be purchased for $1 from target or dollar stores and the student stores sells these as well for a few dollars. I'll show you examples of this in class so you don't inadvertantly get the wrong kind. Here's an example:

2. What's SPSS and do I need to buy it?

SPSS is the software we will be using in this course to analyze data. Don't worry if you have never used it. We'll walk you through it. You will need to purchase a student license for SPSS if you'd like to have it on your machine. There is also an option to access SPSS remotely, but there are a limited number of accounts and it may not be available at the times you need it.