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Effect Size Statistics in Logistic Regression

by KA RE N GR AC E- MA RTIN

Effect size statistics are expected by many journal
editors these days.
If you’re running an ANOVA, t-test, or linear regression
model, it’s pretty straightforward which ones to report.
Things get trickier, though, once you venture into other
types of models.
Many of the common effect size statistics, like etasquared and Cohen’s d, can’t be calculated in a logistic
regression model. So now what do you use?

Types of Effect Size Statistics
First, it’s important to understand what effect size
statistics are for and why they’re worth reporting.
This quotation by Joseph Durlak explains it nicely:
“…provide information about the magnitude and
direction of the difference between two groups or the
relationship between two variables.”
There are two types of effect size statistics–
standardized and unstandardized.
Standardized statistics have been stripped of all units of
measurement.
Correlation is a nice example. People like correlation
because the strength and direction of any two

12 times as big. the odds of the wetland having the invasive plant species is 1. For example. after controlling for the other predictors. compared to another value. and whether the wetland is a fen or a marsh.12. . regardless of the units of the variables on which the correlation was measured. Unstandardized statistics are still measured in the original units of the variables. If the odds ratio for water temperature is 1. altitude. So a difference in two means and a regression coefficient are both effect size statistics and both are useful to report. Most people mean standardized when they say “effect size statistic. Predictors include water temperature in degrees Celsius. Odds ratios measure how many times bigger the odds of one outcome is for one value of an IV. let’s say you’re doing a logistic regression for a ecology study on whether or not a wetland in a certain area has been infected with a specific invasive plant.” But both describe the magnitude and direction of the research findings. you’re also familiar with odds ratios. that means that for each one-degree Celsius increase in water temperature. Odds Ratios as Effect Size Statistics If you’re at all familiar with logistic regression.correlations can be compared.

That odds ratio is an unstandardized effect size statistic. I’ve seen odds ratios listed as standardized effect size statistics. but the statistic would be evaluated on a different scale. but because there never were any. . marsh is 2. The odds ratio for whether the wetland was a fen or a marsh can be considered standardized. It’s unstandardized because it’s based on the units of temperature. I realize no ecologist would do so. The first situation is when the predictor is also binary. It tells you the direction and the strength of the relationship between water temperature and the odds that the plant is present. that odds ratio would have a different value. but if the water were measured in degrees Fahrenheit. The direction and the strength of the relationship would be the same. not because we’ve removed any units.3. So if the odds ratio for fen vs. A little digging showed those authors were referring to one of two situations.3 times that of a marsh. we know the odds of the invasive plant being in a fen is 2. Odds Ratios as Standardized Effect Size Statistics Surprisingly.

. rather than one degree. we’ve removed the units.The second is when the numerical predictor is standardized. We’ll get the same Z scores from degrees Fahrenheit as degrees Celsius. convert the scale to Z scores). and the new odds ratio will be in terms of one standard deviation increases in temperature. If we standardize the temperature (aka.