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Archive for September, 2011

Are there benefits to gaining a strong statistical background?

When people are asked to think of the word statistics, they often think of maths. However, statistics give ways of understanding the world and to advance knowledge into certain areas which may have not been researched into before. When given a task on statistics many students often open SPSS, complete the analysis of the given data and simply look at the ā€˜pā€™ value to see if the data supports the hypothesis, very rarely do they look beyond the results to see why they have been produced they way they have. Having a strong statistical background can provide a person with a more knowledgeable grasp of the data. The evaluation they then give in research reports and projects will seem more supported, if they have delved into the background of the data and the periods of time in which they may have fallen, they will then be able to make further assumptions on the data which may have been missed before. For example, if the results of an experiment into hair and eye colour in Europe had been produced, then a person could look further into the data and find that the distribution of eye and hair colour could be down to the Vikings who conquered countries and made settlements in many areas of Europe, this idea may have not been produced into findings before and therefore when written into an evaluation will make the report seem more valid as more thought has gone into why the results may be. In conclusion I believe that having a strong statistical background can provide benefits into the writing of such reports and will provide more validity into evaluations as more research and personal thought has gone into why the results may or may not support the given hypothesis of the experiment.

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