Course Main Page; Math/Stat 394 A; PROBABILITY-1; Fall 2008
Instructor: Elizabeth Thompson
Email: eathomp at u.washington.edu
Time: MWF 8.30-9.20;
Place: Communications 230
ALL INFORMATION IS CURRENTLY PROVISIONAL
Special Announcement re Add Codes
Add codes will be given in the first class. However, there is a waiting list,
and it may not be possible to accommodate everyone, or even all those who have
As has already been announced by email to all students registered as of Sept 18,
any registered student who is absent on the first day of classes, and who does
not email me to confirm they still want to take this class, may be dropped
to accommodate those on the waiting list.
Always check the Schedule.
It contains links to many things.
If you cannot click on any link, it probably means it is old
stuff, not yet updated for 2008. If you think this is an error, please
Tues 2.00-3.30 (from 10/14), Friday 10.00-11.30.
Or, email me for an appointment, or see me briefly after class (not Mondays).
The book is Sheldon Ross, A first course in Probability, Prentice-Hall (2006)
I will use the Seventh edition (2006). However, there is very little
difference from the sixth edition (or even earlier editions?).
If you are using a
different edition, it is your responsibility to make sure you are doing the
MATH/STAT 394 basically covers most of the first four Chapters of Ross
(plus bits of Chapter 5).
Provisionally, homeworks are due Wednesday, before class.
Late homeworks will be penalized, except in exceptional circumstances.
Otherwise it is too hard on the grader, and delays homework returns for all.
Note your Homework grade is based on a "drop one"; i.e. best (n-1) our of n where n probably is 9.
Minimum standards for written work
Your homework must be easily readable.
Show your work and justify your answers.
Your name must be indicated clearly.
Staple your homework pages together in the correct order.
Exams and Grading
There will be two midterms, one very early, and one quite late (see
Although this is partly to accommodate my travel schedule, it also fits
the course quite well.
The total for the the two midterms is 40%. If, relative to the class, you
do better on the first midterm, the two midterms will count equally
(20% each). If you mess up on the first midterm, it will only count 10% for
you, and you have a chance to make it up on the second, which will then
count 30% for you. Each student's
midterm total score will be figured both ways,
and you will receive the maximum of the two scores.
If due to illness or other genuine emergency you
miss one midterm, your score will be figured from the other midterm and
Your overall score will be converted to a grade via a monotone increasing
but non-linear function.
Grades will surely range from 2.0 to 4.0.
The top scoring students will obtain a 4.0 grade.
If you score less than 50% you will likely get below a 2.0.