Professor of Statistics
Department of Statistics
336 Stokely Management Center
College of Business Administration
The University of Tennessee
Knoxville, TN 37996-0532

Why Statistics Microcomputer Laboratory (SMCL) is Needed

A Statistics Microcomputer Laboratory (SMCL) is needed to meet the specialized requirements of statistical education and research in today's increasingly adaptive change around us.

Since the 1970's, there has emerged a new direction in statistical research and education which links statistical methodology and application by stressing statistical computing through modern computational techniques.

As a modern field, Statistics, in general, looks in two directions. It is a methodological science rooted in the problems of analyzing scientific or statistical data.

It is because of this unique characteristic that the role of statistics and the need of SMCL are of paramount importance in scientific research due to the transdisciplinary nature of statistics.

What are the Primary Purposes of the SMCL

In order to be able to strategically plan new ways to deliver statistical education across UTK, there is a great need in a Statistics Microcomputer Laboratory (SMCL) environment to be able to establish a new cutting edge delivery technologies in our academic program in Statistics at a caliber university such as ours.

The requirements here are no different than in many other "big" sciences, where "laboratories"-experimental, clinical, or otherwise play an important part in research, teaching, and service.

The primary purposes of the Statistics Microcomputing Laboratory (SMCL) will be:





How the Lab Will be Operated

Of overriding importance for the continued operation of the SMCL is the need for technical support staff.

Effective use of SMCL resources requires individuals with expertise and the ability to share their expertise.

In addition, it is necessary for someone to perform such tasks of scheduling:

  • the preventive maintenance,
  • obtaining and installing software,
  • installing updates to existing software,
  • maintaining adequate inventory of computer supplies, diagnosing problems, scheduling the SMCL, and the like.
  • We propose that:


    Hardware and Software of SMCL

    Specifically the SMCL facilities will consist of about ten workstations with half-and-half Pentium PCs and PowerMACs. A detailed list of hardware of SMCL will consist of the following.







    17" Multiscan Monitor




    Assante 10-base T Hubs


    Thinnet Transreceivers


    Laser Printers


    Software (See Below)




     Micron Vetix Server


     Proxima Projector/Drop-In Screen











    My Research Computing

    During the past two years, I have been developing open architecture easy-to-use computational tools using a command-driven interactive computational environment, such as MATLAB to improve student learning by introducing a new underlying pedagogy:



    Under such a design philosophy, users have total control of their:

  • basic computations, and
  • capability of checking and correcting their errors.
  • This facility is preferred over designing and programming one's own code, since it is much less time consuming, less costly, and more versatile. Such a mechanism provides a simple approach to handle complex computations without learning any particular programming language. It frees up more time for conceptual learning.

    Constructed on May 2, 1997 by H. Bozdogan.