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Paul Mathews, Mathews Malnar and Bailey, Inc.

217 Third Street, Fairport Harbor, OH 44077

Phone: 440-350-0911, Fax: 440-350-7210

E-mail: paul@mmbstatistical.com

Copyright c 2000 Mathews Malnar and Bailey, Inc.

1.1 Abstract

Tukeys Quick Test is a nonparametric hypothesis test to compare two independent samples

for location. It is a nonparametric analog to the two independent sample t test. The test

statistic, 1, is the number of slipped data points above and below those overlapped in

the two ordered data sets. When 1 7 there is sucient evidence (c = 0.05) to indicate

that two samples have dierent locations. Other critical values are given and examples are

presented. A variation on Tukeys Quick Test, the Tukey-Neave Test is discussed.

1.2 Key Words

hypothesis test, location, central tendency, two independent samples, nonparametric, slip-

page, Tukey-Neave, two sample t test, quick test

1.3 Introduction

Tukeys Quick Test is a very simple nonparametric hypothesis test used to compare two

independent samples for location (median or mean). Nonparametric tests do not use an

estimator (like r) for a parameter (like j) to make a decision. Rather, nonparametric tests

use other statistics such as counts or rank scores of data for making decisions. In the case of

Tukeys Quick Test, the two independent data sets are ordered and a count of the number

of points slipped (i.e. not overlapped) is used to determine if the samples have dierent

locations. The test is important because it is so simple to use, it does not require that any

special assumptions are met, and no calculations or special tables are required.

1.4 Where the Technique is Used

Tukeys Quick Test is used to compare two independent samples for location. It can be

used any time that the two independent sample t test is appropriate. It can also be used

when the t test cannot if the data are not normal. It is also very easy to use with simple

graphical presentations which compare two samples.

1.5 Data

1. The data must come from two independent random samples.

2. The sample sizes should be at least : = 5.

Mathews Malnar and Bailey, Inc. Page 1

Tukeys Quick Test

3. The ratio of the sample sizes (bigger/smaller) should be less than 1.33.

4. The data can be quantitative but must at least be ordinal (i.e. capable of being

ordered by size).

5. The data may or may not be normally distributed.

1.6 Assumptions

1. The samples are independent and random.

2. The measurement scale is quantitative or at least ordinal.

3. The two samples are measured (or ordered) on the same scale with equal accuracy

and precision.

4. The distributions of the populations being sampled are the same except for a possible

dierence in location.

1.7 Hypotheses Tested

Tukeys quick test is used to test for a location dierence between two independent samples.

The hypotheses tested are:

H

0

: ~ j

1

= ~ j

2

H

A

: ~ j

1

6= ~ j

2

1.8 Procedure

1. Collect independent random samples of approximately the same size from the two

populations.

2. Order the pooled data from the smallest value to the largest value while maintaining

the identity of the data values.

3. Conrm that the data sets are slipped, that is, that one sample contains the largest

value and the other sample contains the smallest value. If one sample contains both

the smallest and largest values then Tukeys Quick Test cannot be used.

4. Count the number of slipped (nonoverlapping) points, 1, in the ordered data sets.

Ties between the two samples that begin or end the overlap are not counted. There

will be points slipped below and above the region of overlap.

5. If

8

>

>

<

>

>

:

1 < 7 then accept H

0

7 1 < 10 then reject H

0

at c = 0.05

10 1 < 13 then reject H

0

at c = 0.01

13 1 then reject H

0

at c = 0.001

Mathews Malnar and Bailey, Inc. Page 2

Tukeys Quick Test

Example 1 Light bulb walls blacken over time which decreases the light output. A design

change is attempted to decrease the blackening. If the original design is A and the new

design is B, samples of the two designs ordered from blackest to cleanest show:

f1111111111g

Determine if the design improvement worked.

Solution: The ordered data shows that the two data sets are slipped. The ve worst bulbs

are As and the four best bulbs are Bs so the test statistic is 1 = 9. This means that we

can reject the null hypothesis at c = 0.05 and conclude that the new bulbs are cleaner.

Example 2 Two manufacturers, A and B, claim to make transistors with identical gain.

Determine if their claim is true if the gains measured on 10 transistors selected randomly

are:

f44. 41. 48. 33. 39. 51. 42. 36. 48. 47g

for manufacturer A and

f51. 54. 46. 53. 56. 43. 47. 50. 56. 53g

for manufacturer B.

Solution: The data sets are independent and are of the same size. The pooled data, ordered

from smallest to largest, are:

f33. 36. 39. 41. 42. 43. 44. 46. 47. 47. 48. 48. 50. 51. 51. 53. 53. 54. 56. 56g

where the smaller font indicates manufacturer A and the larger bold font indicates manu-

facturer B. The two data sets are slipped since manufacturer A has the smallest gain (33)

and manufacturer B has the largest gain (56). The data sets are overlapped from 43 to 51

so there are 5 slipped points at the low end f33. 36. 39. 41. 42g and 5 slipped points at the

high end f53. 53. 54. 56. 56g. (The pair of ties f51. 51g determine the end of the overlapped

region. The pair of ties f56. 56g are not of special concern because they come from the same

sample. Both of them still count as slipped points.) The test statistic is 1 = 5+5 = 10 which

means that we can reject the null hypothesis at c = 0.01 and conclude that the transistor

gains do not have the same location.

Alternatively, it is easier to interpret the data if only symbols like A and B, or + and -, are

used to indicate the two sets. In this case the data are:

f11tt1tt11111g

where the ts indicate ties between the manufacturers (e.g. f51. 51g). The number of slipped

points, 1 = 5 + 5 = 10, is very easy to count this way.

1.9 Discussion

1.9.1 Ties

Ties between the manufacturers in the overlap region are not of any concern, but a tie or

ties at the points where the slippage begins can have an eect on the decision that is made.

Mathews Malnar and Bailey, Inc. Page 3

Tukeys Quick Test

While it is conservative to disqualify ties from the count of slipped points, it is safe to count

a tie as 1,2 of a slipped point. In the rst Example above this modication of the procedure

would have changed the test statistic from 1 = 10 to 1 = 10.5 but the decision and the

signicance level, c = 0.01, still wouldnt change.

Now consider the following ordered data from two sets, A and B:

ftt1111tt11g

where t indicates a tie between A and B. Under the original procedure the test statistic is

1 = 6 and the decision is that there is no dierence in location between A and B. However,

under the modied procedure the overlap begins and ends with ties so the test statistic is

now 1 = 4.5 + 2.5 = 7 and we conclude that there is a dierence between A and B.

If there are more than two points tied between the data sets at the start or end of the

overlap, pairs of points can be considered to cancel each other out and then any remaining

points after all pairs are dealt with count as slipped points. If the ordered data:

f33. 36. 39. 41. 42. 43. 44. 46. 47. 47. 48. 48. 50. 51. 51. 51. 53. 53. 54. 56. 56g

were observed (the only dierence from the Example is the extra 51) then the ties at 51

end the overlap but the second 51 can be counted as a slipped point. This data set gives

a 1 statistic of 1 = 11 or 1 = 11.5 if the tie is counted as 1,2 of a slipped point. If the

ordered data:

f33. 36. 39. 41. 42. 43. 44. 46. 47. 47. 48. 48. 50. 51. 51. 51. 53. 53. 54. 56. 56g

were observed then the test statistic would be 1 = 10 since the ties f51. 51g eectively

cancel each other out and the remaining 51 determines the end of the overlap.

As you can see the discussion of ties can get involved, but these issues are largely just

minor details and are relatively unimportant. If all you remember is that 1 7 indicates

that the two samples have dierent locations you understand the important and necessary

part of the method.

1.9.2 Graphical Applications

Tukeys Quick Test is especially well suited for use with simple graphs. Double stem and

leaf plots, dotplots, and in some cases boxplots can provide opportunities to use the test.

Example 3 Use Tukeys Quick Test to evaluate the data in the double stem and leaf plot

for a dierence of location. The data are 321, 333, 347, ...,413.

6 8

4 2 3 5 7

1 3 7 4 2 4 1 2

320 330 340 350 360 370 380 390 400 410 420

5 7 6 4 5 5 2

4 6 5 3 3

2 9

Solution: The slipped data values are already bolded in the plot. There are 1 = 6 +5 = 11

of them so there is evidence that the two data sets have dierent locations at c = 0.01.

Mathews Malnar and Bailey, Inc. Page 4

Tukeys Quick Test

1.9.3 Methods of Maintaining Identity

There are many methods of maintaining identity of the data when performing the Tukey

Test. If the data are numerical measurement data its possible to write the numbers down in

order, from smallest to largest, but on separate lines, one data set below the other. Another

method is to write the data in order but to use dierent colored pens or a highlighter to

distinguish the samples from each other. Sometimes subscripts on the ordered numbers are

used, or sometimes a bar over numbers indicates one data set and a bar under numbers

indicates the other data set. The number of ways to distinguish to two data sets from each

other is as diverse as the number of dierent kinds of data.

1.9.4 The Tukey-Neave Test

The Tukey-Neave Test is Neaves variation on Tukeys Test. It provides another test for a

dierence between locations when the Tukey Test fails. Proceed as in the Tukey test but

discard the one point that maximizes the test statistic 1 without that point present. The

new accept/reject criteria become:

If

8

>

>

<

>

>

:

1 < 10 then accept H

0

10 1 < 13 then reject H

0

at c = 0.05

13 1 < 16 then reject H

0

at c = 0.01

16 1 then reject H

0

at c = 0.001

It is necessary to justify the removal of the oending data point, that is, the special cause

that makes that one point dierent from the others in the data set must be found.

Example 4 Students from two SAT exam preparation courses were ranked on how they

performed on the SAT test. Their rankings, A for students from the rst course and B for

those from the second course, from worst to best were

f111111111111g

Determine if there is a dierence in performance between the students from the two courses.

Solution: The Tukey test indicates 1 = 2 + 4 = 6 so there is no evidence of a dierence

between the two courses. However, there is one student from the B group who did much

worse on the test than his fellow B students. Upon investigation it was found that the

student had the u and went blind in the middle of the exam. On this basis we can discard

his performance and the new rankings become:

f11111111111g

The new test statistic is 1 = 7 + 4 = 11 which indicates that there is a location dierence

between the A and B groups at the c = 0.05 level according to the Tukey-Neave test.

1.10 References

Conover, W.J., Practical Nonparametric Statistics, 2nd Ed., John Wiley and Sons, 1980.

Tukey, J.W., A Quick, Compact, Two-Sample Test to Duckworths Specications, Tech-

nometrics, Vol. 1, No. 1, February, 1959, p. 31.

Neave, H.R., Quick and Simple Tests Based on Extreme Observations, The Journal of

Quality Technology, 11:1, April 1979, p.66.

Mathews Malnar and Bailey, Inc. Page 5

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