Chapter 3

Descriptive Statistics III: ROC Analysis


This chapter introduces the notation used when evaluating the performance of a test or device. Terms such as true positives, true negatives, false positives, and false negatives are explained. It is shown how these terms can be used to compute the sensitivity, specificity, positive predictive value, and negative predictive value of a test. These concepts are further extended to the field of ROC analysis, which enables the performance of a test at different threshold values to be visualized, and an optimum test to be chosen using calculation of the Youden index. MATLAB examples and exercises are provided to illustrate the key concepts.


true positive; true negative; ...

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