# Correlation

§ Correlation (r) is an indicator`` of association. They allow us to determine the extent to which a person’s standing or rank in one distribution is related to his/her standing or rank in another distribution. § To calculate r, you need two sets of scores or ranks fromthe same set of students . A correlation represents performance for a group of people - not individuals. § Correlation provides information concerning both the strength and direction of the relationship between two variables. The higher the absolute value of r, the stronger the relationship.

Correlation
§ What is the relationship between teacher interaction with students and student achievement? § What is the relationship between amount of non-instructional time (reading direction, taking roll, etc.) and student achievement? § What is the relationship between student efficacy and persistence on homework?

Positive correlation
A POSITIVE CORRELATION occurs when high scores on one variable (Test A) are related to high scores on a second variable (Test B), and low scores on Test A are related to low scores on Test B. Student Jeff Julie Tom Mary Dennis Tim IQ 130 125 120 115 110 105 GPA 4.0 3.5 3.0 2.5 2.0 1.5

Negative Correlation
A NEGATIVE CORRELATION occurs when high scores on one variable (test A) are associated with low scores on a second variable (test B), and low scores on test A are associated with high scores on test B. Student Jeff Julie Tom Dennis Tim Parties Attended 5 4 3 2 1 Test Score 55 65 70 80 99

What correlation looks like

Curvilinear Relationships
§ Use of the Pearson Product Moment correlation will greatly underestimate the relationship between two variables if that relation is curvilinear. § How do you know if a relationship is curvilinear? Two variables increase and then decrease together (or vice versa) , or graph the data to be sure.

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Curvilinear relationships

Self-test
§ What kind of correlation exists between study time and grades? § What kind of relationship exists between hair color and grades? § What kind of relationship exists between number of absences and grades?

Student a b c d e f g h i j

Anxiety Score 1 (lowest) 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Test Score 60 65 80 85 90 100 90 80 70 55

Truncated Ranges of Values

As variability (spread of scores increases), r will increase. Anything that curtails or decreases the range of scores will decrease r.

§ Correlation does not mean causation § Involvement of third variable
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(cold weather does not cause colds, even though there is a strong correlation between temperature and number of colds).

Correlation Coefficients and Prediction

50

40

Although correlation does NOT imply causation, it does imply prediction. That is, if there is a strong correlation between X and Y, we should be able to approximately predict the value of Y given the value of X.
Test 2

30

20 20 30 40 50

Test 1

Model

R

R Square

Std. Error of the Estimate

1

.606(a)

.367

.346

5.40018

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Coefficient of Determination
§ R2 is the percentage of variability in one variable (X) that is associated with or determined by the other variable (Y) (shared variance). § The coefficient of determination also provides a means of making comparative decisions about the relative strength of correlation coefficients. r .80 .40 .20 R2 .64 .16 .04 Coefficient of determination (x100) 64% 16% 4%

Example
A company selling a new standardized test to a school district may say the correlation between their test and national standards is 0.80. (r = 0.80) That means the match between the test and national standards is actually only 64% (r2 = .64).

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