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Basic Statistics in Multivariate Analysis$
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Karen A. Randolph and Laura L. Myers

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199764044

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199764044.001.0001

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Descriptive Statistical Methods

Descriptive Statistical Methods

(p.11) 2 Descriptive Statistical Methods
Basic Statistics in Multivariate Analysis

Karen A. Randolph

Laura L. Myers

Oxford University Press

Chapter 2 provides a review of descriptive statistical methods commonly used in social science research. First, the authors consider the steps involved in defining the variables used in a study, and determining how they will be measured. The four possible levels at which variables can be measured (i.e., nominal, ordinal, interval, and ratio) are reviewed. Next, frequency and percentage distributions, and other graphical representations of data are presented. The most commonly used measures of central tendency—the mode, median, and mean—and the most commonly used measures of variability—the range, variance, and standard deviation—are described. Finally, detailed directions on how to calculate each of these statistics are offered using mathematical formulas and the statistical computer package, SPSS.

Keywords:   descriptive statistics, frequency distribution, levels of measurement, measures of central tendency, measures of variability, univariate, variable

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