Economics 220

Introductory Econometrics

Spring 2006


Mike Robinson

Office: 128 Skinner 538-3085

Office Hours: MW 11-12 and by appointment.

(I am usually around so feel free to stop by.)



Text: Text: Damodar Gujarati, Essentials of Econometrics 3rd Ed.



The purpose of statistics is to provide us with tools for drawing inferences about the complex world we inhabit based on data about the past such that we can make better decisions in the future.  Statistics is not, by any stretch of imagination, the road to Truth.  Rather, statistics is a way to use logical deduction to improve the odds that our decisions will have successful outcomes.

In Economics 220 we learn how to use the tools of statistics to draw conclusions that can guide decision-making.  These tools are commonly used by many economists and, therefore, are essential aspects of the knowledge of any economics major.  We will learn to use and understand descriptive statistics, hypothesis testing, and regression analysis.  We will be using SPSS-X as our statistical analysis package.

By the end of the course, each student should have a good working knowledge of the basic tools used in statistical work, which tools are appropriate to specific problems, and be able to move forward with applying these tools in economics.  For those students who want to construct a senior thesis that makes use of statistics, a second course in econometrics is recommended.





Problem Sets (Weekly)


First Mid-term (October 17)


Second Mid-term (November 25)


Final Exam


Final Paper





The above percentages are suggested and may be adjusted to your benefit if necessary.


Attendance (though not counted per se as part of the grade) will be very important!


Labs and Homework: These will be given most weeks. We will do the lab on Friday. All work is due in class on Monday, no late work will be accepted. You may miss 2 assignments without penalty, though you should really try to do them all.


Research Paper: You will be required to do an research paper using regression analysis that will be presented to the class and turned in the last day of classes.


Course outline and Readings

Listed below are subjects and corresponding text readings (and a few articles) for the semester


1. Introduction

Jan. 30

Chapters 1




2. Basics of Probability

Jan. 30 Feb. 1

Chapters 2




3. Probability Distributions.

Feb. 6 Feb. 8

Chapter 3




4. Important Distributions (Normal)

Feb. 13-Feb. 15





5. Statistical Inference

Feb. 20-Feb. 22

Chapter 5




6. First Exam

Feb. 27





7. Simple Regression

March 1-March 8

Chapter 6




8. Hypothesis Testing

Mar. 13-Mar. 15

Chapter 7




9. Multiple Regression

Mar. 27-Mar. 29

Chapter 8




10. Functional Forms

April 3-April 5

Chapter 9




8. Dummy Variables

April 10-April 12

Chapter 10




Second Mid-Term

April 14





8. Model Selection

April 17-April 19

Chapter 11




9. Multicollinearity

April 24

Chapter 12




10. Heteroscedasticity and Auto Correlation

April 26

Chapters 13-14




10. Student Presentations

May 1-May 8





11. Self-Scheduled Final Exam

Exam Period








Date Done/Due Date