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Economics 390
Statistical Foundations for Econometrics
Syllabus
3 Credits
Tuesday, Thursday: 11:1512:30
Ag Science 101
Instructor
Daniel Goldstein
308 Kern Building
Dang@psu.edu
(USE THIS EMAIL ONLY, NOT ANGEL.)
Office Phone: 8634940
Office Hours: Tuesdays, 2:303:30.
Wednesdays, 13.
Teaching Assistant
TBA
Economics Department Phone Number
8651456
Textbook and Coursepack
Statistics for Business and Economics
, by Paul Newbold, William L. Carlson, and Betty Thorne, 6
th
Edition, Prentice Hall.
(
You need not use the “Penn State Edition” of this text.
If you can find a general
edition more cheaply, good!)
A
required
coursepack containing topicspecific materials, practice exams, and reference tables is
available from the bookstore.
Course Website
This class will utilize Penn State’s ANGEL course management system.
See
https://cms.psu.edu
.
Homework (and solutions), grades, and other materials will be posted there throughout the term.
Do not
send me emails to Angel.
Send them to my internet email only.
Course Description/Objectives
Economics 390 presents material from probability and statistics that is essential background for the
successful study of introductory econometrics in Econ 490. The first part of the course will cover
concepts related to
probability
and provide many examples of the use of probabilistic reasoning. Next,
we introduce
random variables
and how they may be represented by probability
distributions
of either
discrete or continuous type. Next we will discuss
sampling
from a population and the distributions of
some sample statistics. This leads us to the crucial question of
estimation
– how to best use empirical
data to inform us about the value of the unknown parameters of a population. Whether the result of any
estimation is “important” in a statistical sense is addressed through
hypothesis testing
– the use of data as
evidence in helping confirm or reject hypotheses an economist might have as to how the world works.
The last two weeks of the course will synthesize many of the above ideas in introducing a new topic:
linear
regression
, which is the main focus of Econ 490, and is the fundamental tool of empirical
economics (not to mention many other fields).
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View Full DocumentCoursework
Your grade in the class will be comprised of four different components:
1) Exams (70%),
2) Homework
(15%), 3) In class exercises (15%), 4) Attendance (5% Extra Credit).
Exams (70%)
:
There will be two midterm exams, held in class the 5
th
and 11
th
weeks of the semester.
The dates are: Thursday, February 11 and Thursday, April 1.
Time permitting, the class period preceding
each midterm will be a review session.
Each midterm is worth 20% of your total grade.
There will also
be a final exam (30%) held during the class’s scheduled exam time.
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 Spring '08
 GOLDSTEIN,DANIELWILLIAMS,MARLONL
 Econometrics

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