541 - Syllabus
Sampling and Analysis of Environmental Contaminants
Dr. Maxine Dakins
TAB 311, 1776 Science Center Drive, Idaho Falls, ID
This course will cover the sampling and analysis of environmental contaminants from a statistical perspective. It is intended to give graduate students in environmental
science, who have some basic preparation in statistics, a deeper and richer understanding of how statistical methods are related to environmental science and how facility with statistics can help to answer environmental questions.
The first third of the course will focus on designing sampling plans for environmental studies. The second third will begin to cover topics related to analyzing environmental data including discrete and continuous probability distributions, tests of significance, confidence intervals, environmental monitoring, impact assessment, and assessing site reclamation. The last third of the course will deal with techniques to handle data correlated in space and time including time series analysis and spatial data analysis and will touch on censored data and risk assessment.
The prerequisite for the course is Stat 251 or its equivalent. I will not waive the prerequisite under any circumstances. I will review (quickly) the fundamental concepts as we go along and I strongly suggest that you acquire a basic statistics book to refer to if it has been some time since you had a statistics class.
Manly, Bryan. 2009. Statistics for Environmental Science and Management,
Second Edition. Chapman & Hall/CRC Press.
Not Required: Supplemental Text (good for those needing
review of basic concepts): Wheater, C.P. and P.A. Cook. 2000. Using
Statistics to Understand the Environment. Routledge Press. or any
other introductory statistics text that might help you review the
Working problems is very important in mastering statistical
concepts. Everyone is expected to do their own work on the problem
sets; however you may form study groups if you wish. Since we will
go over the solutions when the problem sets are due, they must be
handed in on time. If you will be out of town, submit yours in early
or email it to me. All quizzes and exams should be taken on time; if you will be out of town make arrangements with me to
take the test early.
Evaluation will be based on the problem sets, online threaded
discussion, two midterm exams and a final exam.
Problem sets - 40%
Participation in Online Discussion - 10%
Midterm exams - 25%
Final exam - 25%