Loyola University Maryland

Messina

Stories We Tell Course Pairing

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Data’s Untold Stories: An Introduction to Computer Science (CS201T)

What stories are data itching to tell us? How do we discover those stories and share them with the world? Students in this course will learn how to solve interesting and relevant data science problems using the Python programming language. Students will also gain insights into major areas of computer science, including software engineering, computer hardware, artificial intelligence, and ethical and societal issues in computing. No prior computer science knowledge is expected. Satisfies one math/science core requirement.

Faculty Biography

Megan Olsen is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Computer Science. She received her Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 2011, and has since been teaching at Loyola. She is passionate about using computer science to study the world around us, and teaching first year students how to use computer science to solve interesting problems. Her research interests are interdisciplinary and include studying problems such as cancer cell growth and the spread of gossip. She looks forward to continuing to advise first year students and help them adjust to college life.

Data’s Untold Stories: Introduction to Statistics (ST210T)

Consumers are continuously inundated with statistical information, from which car to purchase, which candidate one should vote for, and whether or not a new cancer treatment is effective. To understand the story the data is telling, a sound background in statistics is necessary.  This course will introduce students to the application of statistics in diverse fields.  We will extract the story from data using graphical and numerical methods as well as statistical inference procedures, and use the computer to efficiently perform computations and construct graphs. Statistical methods are motivated through real data sets. This is a non-calculus-based course covering descriptive statistics, simple linear regression, normal, binomial, and sampling distributions, estimation, and hypothesis testing. The course will use a new approach to understanding statistical inference using the computationally intensive resampling approach. Students planning on majoring in computer science, mathematics, or statistics are encouraged to take this Messina pairing. Of course, other majors are welcome.  These two courses can count as two of the three required science core courses.

Faculty Biography

Dr. Morrell has a Ph.D. in statistics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.  He had been a faculty member at Loyola for 30 years.  In addition to teaching undergraduate statistics, Dr. Morrell works with researchers at the National Institute on Aging to study how various characteristics of people change as they age. Dr. Morrell has been an advisor of first year students for many years.

Mentor Biography

Suzanne Monthie is an Instructional Designer/ Educational Technologist in Technology Services supporting faculty, staff and students with a wide range of technology training needs.  Sue began her career in electrical engineering as a digital designer and programmer in the defense industry. After earning her MS in Instructional Systems Design, she taught high school computer science and physics as well as graduate classes for pre-service teachers. She’s currently navigating the first year college experience with her oldest child. Having taught students of all ages, she is excited to be back in the classroom with undergraduates in 2016.
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