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MAZ611: AP Statistics (2012-2013)

CURRICULUM PROGRAM: Advanced Placement
CALENDAR YEAR: 2012-2013

About the Program:
AP Statistics provides a systematic development of the concepts, principles, and tools of statistics with an emphasis on inquiry and critical-thinking skills associated with the collection, representation, analysis, and drawing conclusions from authentic data. Technology is a central component of the course and includes the use of graphing calculators, computers, and data analysis software. The College Board requires the use of graphing calculators for this course. Though our system has an open enrollment policy, students should understand that this course is designed to be a fourth-year mathematics course, and the equivalent of an introductory, one-semester, non-calculus-based, college-level statistics course. The course requires a working knowledge of Algebra II, and quantitative reasoning. Teaching strategies include collaborative small-group work, pairs engaged in data analysis, whole-group presentations, peer-to-peer discussions, and an integration of technology when appropriate. All aspects of progress in the course are measured using multiple methods such as authentic, performance, observational, and assessment for learning (formative); group and individual projects, student presentations, and assessment of learning (summative). Students are expected to take the AP Statistics Exam at the end of this course.

Major Concepts/Content: AP Statistics is a college-level course which differs from a high school statistics course in terms of depth of coverage and time commitments for study. The content is organized to emphasize major topics which include the following: (1) data investigation, (2) designing and conducting studies, (3) anticipating patterns using probability and simulations, and (4) statistical inference. These topics are detailed in the AP Statistics course description, which is available at AP Central ( (

Course Objectives:

  • Develop statistical thinking based on a conceptual understanding of major topics and tools of data collection, representation, analysis, inference, and conclusions.
  • Analyze and interpret data from graphical displays and numerical distribution summaries, and justify conclusions.
  • Employ the language and symbols of statistics, and effectively communicate the formulation of questions, data collection methods and displays, interpretation of statistical analysis, and evaluation of inferences and predictions based on the data.
  • Use probability as a tool to predict how the distribution of data is related to an appropriate mathematical model.
  • Develop an understanding of statistical inference through the use of confidence intervals and tests of significance.
  • Use graphing calculators and computers in the exploration, statistical analysis, simulation, and modeling of data.
  • Make sense of and evaluate the reasonableness of conclusions based on data.
  • Develop an appreciation for an historical perspective of statistics.

Course Philosophy: Understanding statistics as the science of data is the basis of this course. Statistics is the formal study of data as numbers in a context. Students build an understanding of statistical concepts as they construct relationships and make connections among the various representations of data and how data is interpreted. Although the development of techniques and fluency with graphic and numeric representations to represent problems is important, it is not the only focus of the course. Rather, the course emphasizes a conceptual development of statistical thinking through the use of an exploratory analysis of real data often using technology, planning and implementing well-designed studies, and engaging students in active learning.