Statistics Pre-Class: Yes or No?

Derivatives. Logarithms. Limits. Z-values.

If these words are foreign to you or you know them but not what they mean, let me recommend the statistics pre-class offered ahead of Managerial Statistics. Covered over the course of three week, this Saturday morning pre-class will prime you for what is considered one of the most difficult core PMBA classes. And if you’re a math whiz who loves stats, all I can say is that I hate envy you.

As someone who has a degree in journalism and no propensity for numbers, here are some reasons that you might want to consider this extra effort:

  • High return on investment: First of all, the class is relatively cheap. So not only does it not require a huge financial commitment, it also doesn’t require much of your time. Sure, any Friday party-er will be cursing themselves at 8 a.m. on Saturday but, as they say, “drink everything in moderation.”
  • You’ll feel better about Managerial Statistics: (Note that I didn’t say “good.”) I think I can confidently say that everyone, even the math whizzes, are nervous about stat. It has a reputation at Olin for being difficult, but this pre-class will abate those fears, at least slightly. The main reason is that Professor Gordinier teaches both the pre-class and the actual class, which means some of his examples are the same and you quickly get used to his teaching style.
  • Another reason for PMBA bonding: I mention it here, but I can’t stress enough how important it is to bond with your classmates. This is just another way to spend more time with them and develop those relationships that could turn into networking opportunities after your time at Olin. Trust me, few things bring people together more than an 8 a.m. deep dive into business statistics on a Saturday.

In the end, while I will never feel completely comfortable in statistics, it was a nice reassurance that these terms now ring a bell versus causing immediate despair and confusion. So I say: pre-class FTW!

Have you ever taken a pre-class before? Have you found them helpful? What would prevent you or encourage you to take one?

Image: math, Akash Kataruka, Flickr Creative Commons

In Student Life, Teaching & Learning
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