May 19, 2013

Graham, Norma
[PSYC W1610] Statistics for Behavioral Scientists

Please keep in mind that this review is more than 5 years old.

This course has evolved significantly since most of the reviews below. Professor Graham has taken the complaints about her class into account and revised it so that most of the major issues no longer apply. For instance, there are no more marathon exams or labs. In fact, the first exam was so short and easy that most of the class ended up getting near perfect/perfect scores (she made the later ones longer, but they were still manageable). And there hasn't been a single lab that I wasn't able to complete within the two-hour lab period.

That said, be prepared: Professor Graham is still pretty disorganized with her lectures, and you should expect to teach yourself a lot of the material. She clearly knows her stuff, maybe even too well, so she doesn't really spend a lot of time going over the basics. Which means if you want to do well, you'll need to read the textbook before each lecture. The upside is that if you do have a handle on the material, Graham's lectures actually add a decent amount of value and insight on top of that. If you don't read the textbook, you will have no bloody idea what she's talking about, but that's how it goes.

Anyone who is worried about this class should be reassured by the extremely generous curve of 40% As, 50% Bs, and 10% Cs. If you do even slightly better than the median score, you'll end up with an A. And if you end up screwing up at some point, go talk to her and figure something out, she is an extremely nice old lady who actually really cares about her students. Our TAs, James and Travis, were also awesome, but apparently they will no longer be TAing next semester so new students are gonna have to roll the dice on that one.

Workload:

Low-Moderate for a 4-credit class, the textbook chapters are pretty short. The amount of work you'll have to put into this class will probably depend on how naturally good at math you are. If you suck at math, expect to spend ALOT more time on it.