STAT 590, Spring 2022: Colloquium and Perspectives on Statistics

This online document is the official course syllabus.
It is found at

You may download a pdf version of this syllabus if you wish.
Any changes made to the syllabus after the first day of class will be announced in class and appear in this document in red.

The purpose of this course is to help students in the statistics PhD program make the transition from coursework to research, providing a forum to explore and discuss research topics and to practice written and oral scientific communication.

Due to the shifting demands brought about by the pandemic, we may need to be flexible regarding modes of meeting. Above all, please communicate with the instructor in a timely fashion if your health or other factors limit your ability to participate in person.

PREREQUISITES This course is open to Ph.D. students in the Department of Statistics.

    Instructor: David Hunter, 310 Thomas Building
    Meeting times:All Department of Statistics colloquia, plus some additional meeting times to be arranged on Tuesday afternoons during the usual colloquium time (3:30 to 5:00pm).
    Course Zoom Link, for days when we meet and there is no colloquium:
    Instructor E-mail (this is best way to contact me):
    Office Hours: By appointment

SCHEDULING In addition to Statistics Colloquia on Tuesdays and Thursdays, our tentative scheduling will be as follows. Dates may be subject to change.

    No textbook is required. Various materials (e.g., articles, presentation slides) and relevant internet links (e.g., to research forums, blogs, online talks) will be provided as needed.

Grades will be based on the following:
  1. Individual written evaluations of ten talks (30%) Guidelines
  2. Group written reports (30%) Guidelines
  3. Group presentations (40%) Guidelines

All Penn State and Eberly College of Science policies regarding academic integrity apply to this course. See for details.

I strongly endorse the Eberly College Code of Mutual Respect and Cooperation. I intend to adhere to these tenets in my dealings with students and I hope that students will reciprocate in their interations with all other students, teaching assistants, learning assistants, and me. The code may be found online at

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