Skip to content Skip to navigation

OpenStax-CNX

You are here: Home » Content » What is a random variable?

Navigation

Recently Viewed

This feature requires Javascript to be enabled.
 

What is a random variable?

Module by: Arnold Mwesigye. E-mail the author

A random variable is a term used in mathematics and statistics to represent the numeric result of operating a non-deterministic mechanism or performing a non-deterministic experiment to generate a random result. A random variable cannot be assigned a value. It does not describe the actual outcome of a particular experiment, but rather describes the possible, as-yet-undetermined outcomes in terms of real numbers.

Example:

A random variable can be used to describe the process of rolling a fair die and the possible outcomes { 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 }. Another random variable might describe the possible outcomes of picking a random person and measuring his or her height.

References:

Wikipedia. "Statistical Independence", Wikipedia Foundation Inc, "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Random_Variable", Last accessed 17th February 2006.

Arnold Mwesigye

Petrina Mangala

Content actions

Download module as:

Add module to:

My Favorites (?)

'My Favorites' is a special kind of lens which you can use to bookmark modules and collections. 'My Favorites' can only be seen by you, and collections saved in 'My Favorites' can remember the last module you were on. You need an account to use 'My Favorites'.

| A lens I own (?)

Definition of a lens

Lenses

A lens is a custom view of the content in the repository. You can think of it as a fancy kind of list that will let you see content through the eyes of organizations and people you trust.

What is in a lens?

Lens makers point to materials (modules and collections), creating a guide that includes their own comments and descriptive tags about the content.

Who can create a lens?

Any individual member, a community, or a respected organization.

What are tags? tag icon

Tags are descriptors added by lens makers to help label content, attaching a vocabulary that is meaningful in the context of the lens.

| External bookmarks