TAKEN DIRECTLY FROM VARIOUS WEBSITES
When actually presenting the results, try to emphasize the meaning of the statistics. That is,
clearly describe what it is you are testing and what significance means for the variables
Be careful with the word "prove". Since statistical tests are based on probability and can be in
error, they do not really prove anything.
You can only use wording that implies causality if you actually manipulated the independent variable (i.e.,
performed an experiment). For example, suppose you manipulated whether subjects received a drug (while
employing appropriate control procedures, etc.) and found a significant difference in memory performance
(with the drug users performing more poorly than nonusers). In this case, you would be able to conclude that the
the difference in memory ability; it impaired it. As another example, suppose that you compared
drug use (as determined from the results of a survey) with memory ability and found a correlation (greater use
went along with poorer memory performance). Since correlation doesn't say much about causality, we could
only conclude that there is a
between drug use and memory ability.
“While the correlation was not significant using the standard alpha level of .05, the p-value was
less than .10.” BUT, you must provide a
for why you should still be able to discuss this
non-significant correlation (e.g, power, effect size issues). You may cautiously interpret such a
correlation. Don’t make grand conclusions or use strong language based on the existence of a
marginally significant finding. Also, you should indicate that a marginal finding is non-
significant in a table; only refer to the statistic as “
” in the text of the
When reporting a significant difference between two conditions, indicate the direction of this
difference, i.e. which condition was more/less/higher/lower than the other condition(s). Assume
that your audience has a professional knowledge of statistics. Don’t explain how or why you
used a certain test unless it is unusual.
Were differences statistically significant (i.e., p =.05 or below)? Don't merely give the
statistical numbers without a supporting sentence. You also cannot use statistics as though they
were parts of speech (i.e., nouns).
write “The correlation between private self-consciousness and college adjustment
= - .26,
= .01.” DO NOT WRITE THIS.
Instead, translate important data for the reader into words and provide the statistics as evidence for your
reported results. For example,
EXAMPLES --- TAKEN DIRECTLY FROM VARIOUS SITES – SEE LIST AT BOTTOM
“The negative correlation between private self-consciousness and college adjustment
indicated that increased self-consciousness predicted poor adjustment,
(60) = - .26,