University of Rhode Island    Department of Mathematics

MTH 451/1000   

Intoduction to Probability and Statistics 

Summer 2011

MTWTh 10 - 11:45 a.m. 

Instructor: Dr. M. Kulenovic, Lippitt Hall 200A, 874-4436,
TextLester Helms, Introduction to ProbabilityTheory with Contemporary Applications
Prerequisites: MTH 243 or equivalent
Calculators: A graphing calculator is required
Office Hours: MW 1-2;  TTh: 12-1

Room:Lippitt 204


Text Lester Helms, Introduction to ProbabilityTheory with Contemporary Applications

Additional Texts:(Excellent sources of solved problems)

Grinstead and Snell, Introduction to Probability (available for free download from:


Robert Ash

Basic Probability Theory, Dover (available for free download from:


Topics Combinatorial Methods, Probability, Random Variables, Generating Functions, Probability Distributions and Probability Densities, Mathematical Expectation, Special Probability Distributions, Functions of Random Variables, Law of Large Numbers and Central Limit Theorem.
Evaluation Weekly homework (15%), quizzes (25%), midtem exam (25 %), a comprehensive final exam (35 %) 
About the Course MTH 451 is an introduction to the mathematical theory of probability using calculus. Probability theory has a tremendous variety of applications in all the sciences, including the social sciences, business and economics, and provides the mathematical foundation for statistics. It uses a wide variety of mathematical techniques and concepts, especially elementary set theory, combinatorics, and calculus. A main goal of this course is that you will be able to read more advanced material on probability and its applications and go on to courses in mathematical statistics and stochastic processes. The class is designed for an audience with quite diverse interests, for example: if you are an engineering, science, economics or business major, probability will be a basic part of your mathematical toolkit; if you are a secondary math education major, you will most likely need to take the Praxis content exam, which contains material on discrete mathematics and probability for which this course is great preparation; if you are interested in taking the actuarial exams, this course is absolutely fundamental. Probability theory is a fundamental discipline in mathematics itself and well as the foundation for all of statistics. In addition, the study of Probability Theory can be entertaining, enlightening and sometimes surprising.

Mathematica Notebooks (developed by Professor Lew Pakula):

How to get help
I may help you with questions, just stop by my office or you can get help from competent grader (Caitlin Phifer): 

Summer Tutoring

Special Accomodations
Students who need special accomodations and who have documentation from Disability Services (874-2098) should make arrangements with Dr. Kulenovic as soon as possible.


The Authors of the textbook have prepared a set of programs to go with the book. There are Mathematica, Maple versions of these programs. You can download the programs from this location. There are also experimental versions of the programs as Java applets

MTH 451-1000  Intoduction to Probability and Statistics Summer 2011

Day  Event Text   Suggested Homework Problems 
Monday, May 23   1.2












    2.5  2-6,8 
 May 30 No classes

Makeup date 6/3 





 May 31  Quiz 1 3.2












 June 6 4.4  1,2,5,6
 June 7  Quiz 2 4.5 1,2,4,5
4.6  1,2,5,7,8
 June 9  Exam 1 6.2 1,3,4,5,8,9
 June 13   6.3 2-5
    6.4 1,3,4,7
  6.5 2,3,5,6
    6.6 2,5,6,8,9
 June 16  Quiz 3 7.2 1,2,4,10
 June 20   7.3 1,2,4,7
   Quiz 4 7.4 1,2,4,7,8
    7.5 1,3,5
 June 23  FINAL EXAM