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SOAA 3350 Syllabus

Course Syllabus

SOAA 3350 - Social Statistics

3 Credit Hours

Course Information

Course Description:

An introduction to applied statistics in the field of sociology and related disciplines. Emphasis is placed on the assumptions, restrictions, and uses of various methods of analyzing data.

Course Outcomes:

Upon completing this course:

  • The student will be able to select appropriate statistical procedures in research endeavors
  • The student will understand the assumptions that must be met and calculations that must be made in order for a statistical outcome to be correctly calculated and suitably applied
  • The student will be able to use a statistical computer package to generate statistical results and interpret the output
  • The student will accurately and astutely interpret statistical results reported by other researchers
Prerequisites & Co-requisites:

MATH 1530 or comparable course.

Course Topics:
  • probability
  • error management and control
  • graphs and charts
  • sampling
  • normal distribution
  • bivariate and multivariate statistics
  • descriptive and inferential statistics
Specific Course Requirements:

Textbooks, Supplementary Materials, Hardware and Software Requirements

Required Textbooks:

Please visit the Virtual Bookstore to obtain textbook information for this course. Move your cursor over the "Books" link in the navigation bar and select "Textbooks & Course Materials." Select your Program, Term, Department, and Course; then select "Submit."

Supplementary Materials:

IBM no longer allows texts to be bundled with the SPSS software. If you do not have access to SPSS, it will be a required purchase. The studentware version is sufficient to complete the course. Please see our FAQ Board to learn about alternative purchasing.

Hardware and Software Requirements:

Minimum hardware requirements can be found here.

Minimum software requirements can be found here.

Common applications you might need:

Web Resources:

Purdue OWL Online Writing Lab (for APA, MLA, or Chicago style)

The Writing Center Online Writer's Handbook

Student Resources:
  • Technical support information can be found on the TN eCampus Help Desk page.
  • Smarthinking virtual tutoring is available FREE of charge. to access Smarthinking, visit the course homepage and select Smarthinking under Course Resources. You also view sample sessions to see what Smarthinking offers and how it works.
  • Information on other student issues or concerns can be located on the TN eCampus Student Resources page.

Instructor Information

Please see "Instructor Information" in the Getting Started Module for instructor contact information, virtual office hours, and other communication information. You can expect to receive a response from the instructor within 24-48 hours unless notified of extenuating circumstances.

Participation, Assessments, & Grading

Testing Procedures:

Three major exams will be administered online, one of which will require a proctor. 

The course grade will consist of two major components: homework and exams. There will be three exams during this term (two non-proctored and a proctored final). Exam preparation/review will be provided for each exam.

Exam 1 will cover Chapters 1-5
Exam 2 will cover Chapters 6-9
Exam 3 will cover Chapters 10, 11 & 13

The student is responsible to secure an appropriate proctor for the final exam per RODP proctoring guidelines (guidelines). Do so well in advance, as you cannot access the final exam without your proctor having secured the test access information. Complete information regarding selecting proctors is provided in course material. 

Grading Procedures:

Homework will be submitted for each chapter of material covered.

Grading Scale:

Final grades are based on the following scale:

A=90 and up
F= 0-59

10 Homework Assignments = 25% of final grade

Exam 1           = 25% of final grade
Exam 2           = 25% of final grade
Proctored Final Exam    = 25% of final grade

Assignments and Projects:

You will be assigned eleven (11) homework assignments during our term. These assignments may require some calculation and real world assignments in order to "hammer home" the logic and assumptions behind each statistical procedure we cover. If such calculations are to be covered on the test, you will be given a heads up.

Homework may also require some data manipulations using SPSS software. Be sure you have access to SPSS 16.0 or later. Please install SPSS as soon as possible in the term, so that we can work through any possible technical problems before they cause you a delay in completing coursework. Instructions for installing SPSS can be found in the Lesson One material.

Homework Assignments, 10 pts each, 100 pts total, 25% of final grade

  • HW1, covers Module 1: The What and Why of Statistics (Ch 1)
  • HW2 covers Module 2: Organizing and Grouping Information (Ch 2 and 3)
  • HW3 covers Module 3: Measures of Central Tendency & Variability (Ch 4 and 5)
  • HW4 covers Module 4: The Normal Distribution (Ch 6)
  • HW5 covers Module 5: Sampling and the Sampling Distribution (Ch 7)
  • HW6 covers Module 6: Estimation (Ch 8)
  • HW7 covers Module 7: Testing Hypotheses using T-tests (Ch 9)
  • HW8 covers Module 8: Relationships between 2 Variables: Crosstabs (Ch 10)
  • HW9 covers Module 9: Chi-square Tests of Significance & Measures of Association: Lambda & Gamma (Ch 11) 
  • HW10 covers Module 10: Regression and Correlation (Ch 13)

Exam 1, 100 points, 25% of final grade (covers Modules 1-3)
Exam 2, 100 points, 25% of final grade (covers Modules 4-7)
Final Exam, 100 points, 25% of final grade (covers Modules 8-10) 

Class Participation:

Discussion boards are provided to allow you to interact with other class members. Answers to frequently asked questions and other helpful hints or clarifications will also be posted on the discussion board, so be sure to check them often.  

Late Policy:

Homework is usually due on Sunday by 11 p.m. during the fall and spring terms. Exact cut-off dates are listed in the assignment dropbox, and once the submission date is passed the assignment is no longer accessible. Homework and exam grades will be reported promptly. 

Course Ground Rules

The following two statements (1., 2.) were derived from the TBR System-wide Student Rules document, released January 2012:


Read the document in its entirety here.

1. Standards of Conduct:

  • Students are required to adhere to the same professional, legal and ethical standards of conduct online as on campus. In addition, students should conform to generally accepted standards of "netiquette" while sending e-mail, posting comments to the discussion board, and while participating in other means of communicating online. Specifically, students should refrain from inappropriate and/or offensive language, comments and actions.

2. Review the TN eCampus Academic Integrity/Academic Honesty Policy:

  • In their academic activities, students are expected to maintain high standards of honesty and integrity. Academic dishonesty is prohibited.

Such conduct includes, but is not limited to:

  • an attempt by one or more students to use unauthorized information in the taking of an exam
  • to submit as one's own work, themes, reports, drawings, laboratory notes, computer programs, or other products prepared by another person,
  • or to knowingly assist another student in obtaining or using unauthorized materials.

Plagiarism, cheating, and other forms of academic dishonesty are prohibited.

Students guilty of academic misconduct, either directly or indirectly through participation or assistance, are subject to disciplinary action through the regular procedures of the student’s home institution.  Refer to the student handbook provided by your home institution to review the student conduct policy.

In addition to other possible disciplinary sanctions that may be imposed, the instructor has the authority to assign an "F" or zero for an activity or to assign an "F" for the course.

Other Course Rules:

Students are expected to:

  • Participate in all aspects of the course
  • Communicate with other students
  • Learn how to navigate in Brightspace
  • Keep abreast of course announcements
  • Use the assigned course management (Brightspace) email address rather than a personal email address
  • Address technical problems immediately:
  • Observe course netiquette at all times.

Guidelines for Communications


  • Always include a subject line.
  • Remember without facial expressions some comments may be taken the wrong way. Be careful in wording your emails. Use of emoticons might be helpful in some cases.
  • Use standard fonts.
  • Do not send large attachments without permission.
  • Special formatting such as centering, audio messages, tables, html, etc. should be avoided unless necessary to complete an assignment or other communication.
  • Respect the privacy of other class members


  • Review the discussion threads thoroughly before entering the discussion. Be a lurker then a discussant.
  • Try to maintain threads by using the "Reply" button rather starting a new topic.
  • Do not make insulting or inflammatory statements to other members of the discussion group. Be respectful of other’s ideas.
  • Be patient and read the comments of other group members thoroughly before entering your remarks.
  • Be cooperative with group leaders in completing assigned tasks.
  • Be positive and constructive in group discussions.
  • Respond in a thoughtful and timely manner.


The Tennessee Virtual Library is available to all students enrolled in TN eCampus programs and courses. Links to library materials (such as electronic journals, databases, interlibrary loans, digital reserves, dictionaries, encyclopedias, maps, and librarian support) and Internet resources needed by learners to complete online assignments and as background reading will be included within the course modules. To access the Virtual Library, go to the course homepage and select the Virtual Library link under Course Resources.

Students with Disabilities

Qualified students with disabilities will be provided reasonable and necessary academic accommodations if determined eligible by the appropriate disability services staff at their home institution. Prior to granting disability accommodations in this course, the instructor must receive written verification of a student's eligibility for specific accommodations from the disability services staff at the home institution. It is the student's responsibility to initiate contact with their home institution's disability services staff and to follow the established procedures for having the accommodation notice sent to the instructor.

Syllabus Changes

The instructor reserves the right to make changes as necessary to this syllabus. If changes are necessitated during the term of the course, the instructor will immediately notify students of such changes both by individual email communication and posting both notification and nature of change(s) on the course bulletin board.


The information contained in this syllabus is for general information purposes only. While we endeavor to keep this information up-to-date and accurate, there may be some discrepancies between this syllabus and the one found in your online course. The syllabus of record is the one found in your online course. Please make sure you read the syllabus in your course at the beginning of the semester. Questions regarding course content should be directed to your instructor.

Last Revised on April 28, 2017