Chapter 3

Getting Statistical: A Short Review of Basic Statistics

In This Chapter

arrow Getting a handle on probability, randomness, sampling, and inference

arrow Tackling hypothesis testing

arrow Knowing about nonparametric statistical tests

This chapter provides a brief overview of some basic concepts that are often taught in a one-semester introductory statistics course. They form a conceptual framework for topics that I cover in more depth throughout this book. Here, you get the scoop on probability, randomness, populations, samples, statistical inference, hypothesis testing, and nonparametric statistics.

Note: I can only summarize the concepts here; they’re covered in much more depth in Statistics For Dummies, 2nd Edition, and Statistics II For Dummies, both written by Deborah J. Rumsey, PhD, and published by Wiley. So you may want to skim through this chapter to get an idea of what topics you’re already comfortable with and which ones you need to brush up on.

Taking a Chance on Probability

Defining probability without using some word that means the same (or nearly the same) thing can be hard. Probability is the degree of certainty, the chance, or the likelihood that something will happen. ...

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