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Descriptive Statistics:Introduction

Module by: Barbara Illowsky, Ph.D., Susan Dean. E-mail the authors

Summary: Note: This module is currently under revision, and its content is subject to change. This module is being prepared as part of a statistics textbook that will be available for the Fall 2008 semester.

Note: You are viewing an old version of this document. The latest version is available here.

Once you have collected data, what will you do with it? Data can be described and presented in many different formats.For example, suppose you are interested in buying a house in a particular area. You may have no clue about the house prices, so you might ask your realtor to give you a sample data set of prices.Looking at all the prices in the sample often is overwhelming.A better way might be to look at the median price and the variation of prices.The median and variation are just two ways that you will learn to describe data. Your realtor might also provide you with a graph of the data.

In this chapter, you will study numerical and graphical ways to describe and display your data. This area of statistics is called "Descriptive Statistics".You will learn to calculate, and even more importantly,to interpret these measurements and graphs.

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