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Robert G. Moser, Chair BAT 2.116, Mailcode A1800, Austin, TX 78712 • 512-471-5121

Amy Liu

Assistant Professor Ph.D., Emory University



ethnic politics, migration politics, Southeast Asia, Eastern Europe

GOV 391J • Statistical Anly In Pol Sci I

39115 • Fall 2014
Meets T 330pm-630pm BAT 5.102
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-Prerequisites: none


-Course Description:  This is the first course in the graduate

sequence in  quantitative empirical analysis in the Government



At a fundamental level, this course lays the groundwork for answering the question “What can we learn about political systems and political processes from empirical observations?’’ In doing so, the relationship between theory and data (ie ‘’the real world’’) is explicated. It does so via quantitative political methodology- the application of statistical methods and reasoning to problems in political science. The primary goals of the course are two-fold: firstly to provide a conceptual and rigorous introduction to statistical inference and reasoning about uncertainty (that is: “how should we, as social scientists, think about estimating quantities of substantive interest based on limited information?’’) and secondly, to provide mathematical and statistical preparation for further courses in quantitative methods. The course will cover a fair amount of material, so it is important that students keep up with the material and readings. Do not hesitate to utilize the resources available, especially the professor (both in class and during office hours) and teaching assistant concerning any questions or concerns.


Text(s): There is no single textbook for the course. Rather, material is drawn from several sources (documented below). Lectures are meant to be self-contained. Readings are important to compliment (or even supplement) lectures. Course material is primarily drawn from the following:

  • • [LM] Richard J. Larsen and Morris L. Marx. An Introduction to Mathematical Statistics and Its Applications (Fifth Edition). Pearson/Prentice Hall. [Strongly recommended]
  • • [AF] Alan Agresti and Barbara Findlay. Statistical Methods for the Social Sciences (Third Edition).
  • • [Row] Derek Rowntree. Statistics Without Tears (2000) Penguin Publishing.



-Grading Policy:  Grades will be based on problem sets and examinations.

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