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AP Biology

Using Excel (Numbers) & Basic Statistics

Huff

Data Entry Data may be entered directly or cut and pasted from other Excel files or files from other programs. Before entering data, you should always consider the objectives of using a particular data set; columns should be designed according to the manner in which data will be used &/or collected. In this exercise, you will be copying and pasting data from a text file into Excel. Open Safari. Go to the Moodle to download the text file titled Data File 1. Copy the complete data set, including titles. Paste these data into Excel (Numbers) by clicking EDIT and then selecting PASTE (see right). The data can then be formatted such that the sheet is easier to read by highlighting column headers, re-sizing columns, centering text, etc. You will notice columns for Plot, Distance, Treatment, Shade, Light, Plant mass, Percent Cover, Diversity, and Species Richness. The two statements at the top of the sheet explain the origin of these data. Under Treatment, S = shaded, U = unshaded. For more information on the data, see me after class-Oecologia-ShadingPaper. Filters and Sorting Depending upon the information one wishes to derive from the data, it may be necessary to re-sort the data or to extract portions of the data to be pasted into another worksheet for manipulation. To sort or filter, highlight all of the data and the column headings, click the REORGANIZE button on the upper toolbar, and select the appropriate option. First, lets resort the data to group together the shaded and unshaded treatment data. In order to do this, you must highlight the data set. Now, select the data, click REORGANIZE and sort by Treatment, then by Plot, then by Distance, all in ascending order. Also be sure to indicate whether you have included your header row in the selected data to be sorted. Now, click OK and the data will be sorted. We now can calculate summary data for the two shade treatments from the raw data in each of the last six data columns. Creating Summary Information The two most useful pieces of summary data you will need from Excel (Numbers) are a mean and variance estimate from each group of data to be used in the laboratory exercises. The typical variance estimate that I (and most others) use is the
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AP Biology

Using Excel (Numbers) & Basic Statistics

Huff

Standard Error. Standard error (SE) is computed as the standard deviation of a dataset divided by the square root of the number of values in the set. To calculate the mean and SE of a group of data, such as shade, lets first copy and paste the data and grouping variables onto a new worksheet. Now, add a header for mean and SE. Type the formula for average into the cell beneath the header [=average (data)] and for SE into the appropriate cell [=stdev(data)/sqrt(n)]. The data range should include the first 16 rows of shade data. The last 16 rows will be summarized in the two cells adjacent the first data for unshaded plots, in the same manner as above. This process can be repeated for all seven response parameter columns, preferably with each in a new, appropriately named worksheet. Create a new worksheet by clicking INSERTworksheet. Name worksheets by double-clicking the worksheet tab at the bottom of the screen and typing a name. COPY & PASTE Creating graphs Now that you have summary data that can be used to compare the two treatments, you are ready to create pictorial representations of those data to actually see how the treatments compare. In the shade data example, lets see whether the experimental manipulation actually resulted in a real difference in the light environment among the plots. Bar Charts Click the mean for Shaded data and hold command while clicking the mean for the Unshaded data. Click the chart icon in the middle upper of the top toolbar (it looks like a miniature bar graph [or Adidas]). Select Bar Chart. You now need to indicate which data are which bar; click the label beneath the series and name it Shaded and/or Unshaded. There are numerous ways to enter the data to plot. The easiest is to click on the small worksheet icon to the right of each empty data selection windows. You also can type the data directly into the window or type in the worksheet range where the data are located. For X-axis labels, you may simply type Shaded,Unshaded into the window. A preview of the chart appears in the upper portion of this dialogue box. NEXT, you have the option of modifying various of the chart features, including axis titles, gridlines, etc. To add the SE estimate, we will add error bars by clicking SERIES, then ADVANCED. This allows you to Format Data Series. Click the Error Bars tab, select positive and negative error bars. Thereafter,
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AP Biology

Using Excel (Numbers) & Basic Statistics

Huff

select custom: indicate the positive and negative value for the STANDARD ERROR (both values [positive and negative] will be the same). Be sure to indicate that you want BOTH plus and minus error bars, and click OK (remember: you calculated these values earlier). X,Y Scatterplots Often, I use scatterplots to look for general patterns in my data as a preliminary step to statistical analysis or modification of research methods. You create scatterplots essentially the same way as the bar charts above. Click on the chart wizard icon in the middle upper of the top toolbar (it looks like a miniature bar graph). Highlight XY (Scatter) and click NEXT. Go to the Series tab, REMOVE any series present, ADD the data for Distance as X your X data, and data for Shade as your Y data. NEXT, modify any axis titles that need to be modified, along with other chart features, and have a look at the data. Are there any noticeable patterns? Why not? Right you need to examine the data from the two treatments separately. Change the data series so that you have two series: one for shaded plots and one for unshaded plots. You also will probably want to name the two series and modify the appearance of symbols, etc. Generally, any modifications can be made by double-clicking the item you wish to modify and making adjustments within the provided dialog box. You also can include means and SE for each treatment on a scatterplot by adding the means as a series and adding Y error bars to those points only. Do this for the Shaded Plots data only. Youll need to calculate means for each distance, which will require a slightly different approach than your previous calculation of means and SE (see example at right). Now, plot the means of both treatments against one another, without the scatterplot of raw data in the background. How does this plot compare with the first bar chart you made? Line Graphs If we want to look specifically at data within a given plot, we may wish to connect points with a line, to indicate that those data are all correlated. This can be done similarly to the above actions. In the chart wizard, select Line graph, the data you want to plot, and make necessary modifications. Again, with multiple lines, you probably want to include legend titles to indicate which lines belong to which plots. Plot lines for Plots 8 and 2 on the same chart. DATA LAB ASSIGNMENT Use the techniques provided above to produce figures appropriately displaying at least THREE of the following relationships. 1. Treatment (Shade/No Shade) vs. Dry Plant Mass 2. Dry Plant Mass vs. Percent Cover 3. Diversity vs. Species Richness 4. Treatment (Shade/No Shade) vs. Species Richness OR Diversity (you chose one) 5. Treatment (Shade/No Shade) AND Distance vs. Diversity
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AP Biology

Using Excel (Numbers) & Basic Statistics

Huff

6. Treatment (Shade/No Shade) AND Distance vs. Species Richness 7. Distance vs. Light in plots 8 and 2 8. Distance vs. Species Richness in plots 8 and 2 For each figure you create, provide a sentence or two describing the pattern produced by the data. In other words, what does each figure tell you? You should submit figures and your interpretations for each of the above items one week from today. A printed, hard copy or electronic submission is required no handwritten charts will be accepted.

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