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Statistics in Perspective

Statistics in Perspective Chapter Twelve .

(see Figure 12. Four different combinations of research are possible.1) All groups are made up of individual units .Approaches to Research  Educational Research is performed in one of two ways: 1) 2)   Two or more groups are compared Variables within one group are related The data in a study may be either quantitative or categorical.

1) .Combinations of Data and Approaches (Figure 12.

A Difference that Doesn’t Make a Difference (Figure 12.2) .

Comparing Groups: Quantitative Data  When comparing two or more groups using quantitative data. researchers can compare them through the following:     Frequency polygons Calculation of averages Calculations of spreads Recommendations are made to perform the following:   Prepare a frequency polygon of each group’s score Use these polygons to decide which measure of central tendency is appropriate to calculate .

3) .Frequency Polygons (Figure 12.

90% Confidence Interval (Figure 12.4) .

. t-tests.Comparing Groups: Quantitative Data (cont. Considerations of the following can assist with interpreting data more clearly:    Information based on known groups Calculate the effect size of the groups Use inferential statistics e.)   Once the descriptive statistics have been calculated. etc. interpretations must follow.g. ANOVA.

even correlations this small may have a predictive value. .61 to .1) Magnitude of r Interpretation . perhaps of theoretical value. a .00 to .40 Of little practical importance except in unusual circumstances. but rarely obtained in educational research.Interpretation of Correlation when Testing Research Hypotheses (Table 12.60 Large enough to be of practical as well as theoretical use. a very sizable relationship.41 to . When selecting a very few people from a large group. .80 Very important. if not.81 to above Possibly an error in calculation.a .

5) .Scatterplots with a Pearson r of .5 (Figure 12.

Comparing Groups: Categorical Data  When using categorical data. groups may be compared through the following methods:      Percentages/Proportions Frequencies Crossbreak Tables A limitation of categorical data is that such evaluations are even harder than with quantitative data. The use of the summary statistic known as contingency coefficient is recommended but data must be presented in crossbreak tables. .

Recap of Recommendations      Use graphic techniques before calculating numerical summary indices Use both graphs and summary indices to interpret results of a study Make use of external criteria to assess the magnitude of a relationship Use professional consensus when evaluating magnitude of effect size Consider using inferential statistics     Use tests of statistical significance only to evaluate generalizability When random sampling has not occurred. treat probabilities as approximations or crude indices vs. precise values Report confidence intervals rather than significance levels if possible Use both parametric and non-parametric techniques to analyze data rather than either one alone .