a Lecture notes on terminology

a Lecture notes on terminology - Terminology 1 Basic...

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Terminology 1 Basic terminology Statistics, science and observations Definitions of statistics: A field of study A set of procedures A computation based on a sample The term statistics refers to a set of mathematical procedures for organizing, summarizing, and interpreting information, BUT, it has other meanings as well. A brief discussion of science would be appropriate here, stressing empiricism and pragmatism. Populations and samples A population is the set of all individuals of interest in a particular study. The definition of the population describes who is and who is not a member of the population. Population sizes may vary from empty to infinite. A sample is a set of individuals selected from a population, usually intended to represent the population in the research study. The usual intention is to make an inference about the population on the basis of observations made on the sample. Parameters and statistics A parameter is a value that describes a population. It is based on observations of all the members of the population. A statistic is a value that describes a sample. It is based on observations of all members of the sample. (Note that this is a different definition of statistics from the one above.) Descriptive and inferential statistics Descriptive statistics are statistical procedures that are used to summarize, organize, and simply data. They only apply to the data, or set of scores that have been collected. Inferential statistics consist of techniques that allow us to study samples and then make generalizations about the populations from which they were selected. Sampling error is the discrepancy between a sample statistic and the corresponding population parameter. Error does not imply mistake; it is just a difference. As researchers, one of our jobs is try to reduce sampling error as much as possible. Our other job is to try to determine if the differences we see in the
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This note was uploaded on 09/08/2010 for the course MS 208 at San Jose State University .

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a Lecture notes on terminology - Terminology 1 Basic...

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