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To prove anything with statistics, this is only true if we use them improperly.

There are mainly 3 types of statistical pitfalls i.e Source of Bias, Error in Methodology and concern interpretation of

results.

The core value of statistical methodology is its ability to assist one in making inferences about a large group (a

population) based on observations of a smaller subset of that group (a sample).

In order for this to work correctly, a couple of things have to be true: the sample must be similar to the target

population in all relevant aspects; and certain aspects of the measured variables must conform to assumptions which

underlie the statistical procedures to be applied.

Representative sampling. The observed sample must be representative of the target population for inferences to

be valid. Of course, the problem comes in applying this principle to real situations. The ideal scenario would be where

the sample is chosen by selecting members of the population at random, with each member having an equal

probability of being selected for the sample.

This process will be feasible for manufacturing processes, but it is more complicated and problematic for studying

people.

Author given an example as sample would be if the instrument were developed during an economic recession; it is

reasonable to assume that people applying for jobs during a recession might be different as a group from those

applying during a period of economic growth (even if one can't specify exactly what those differences might be). In

this case, you'd want to exercise caution when using the instrument during better economic times. There are also

ways to account for, or "control", differences between groups statistically, as with the inclusion of covariates in a

linear model. Unfortunately, as Levin (1985) points out, there are problems with this approach, too. One can never

be sure one has accounted for all the important variables, and inclusion of such controls depends on certain

assumptions which may or may not be satisfied in a given situation (see below for more on assumptions).

Statistical assumptions. While going through any Statistical assumptions we have to follow rules and validation

depends on assumptions. The validity of a statistical procedure depends on certain assumptions it makes about

various aspects of the problem.

The robustness of statistical techniques only goes so far--"robustness" is not a license to ignore the assumption. If

the distributions are non-normal, try to figure out why; if it's due to a measurement artefact (e.g. a floor or ceiling

effect), try to develop a better measurement device (if possible). Another possible method for dealing with unusual

distributions is to apply a transformation. However, this has dangers as well; an ill-considered transformation can

do more harm than good in terms of interpretability of results.

Error in methodology

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Advance Analytics Assignment 2

If there is little statistical power, a researcher risks overlooking the effect which he/she is attempting to discover.

This is especially important if one intends to make inferences based on a finding of no difference. However, it should

be noted that it is possible to have too much statistical power. If the sample is too large, nearly any difference, no

matter how small or meaningless from a practical standpoint, will be "statistically significant." This occurrence can

be particularly problematic in applied settings, where important decisions are determined by statistical results.

Studying the relationship of multiple variables is especially troublesome because the desired knowledge is complex

in nature and many different combinations of factors need to be examined. The best strategy to check these different

combinations of factors is to rerun the experiment and see which comparisons show differences in both groups

Most statistical models assume error free measurement, at least of independent (predictor) variables. However,

measurements are seldom perfect. Therefore, close attention must be paid to the effects of measurement errors.

This is especially important when dealing with noisy data such as questionnaire responses or processes which are

difficult to measure precisely.

The difference between "significance" in the statistical sense and "significance" in the practical sense continues to

elude many consumers of statistical results.

Precision and Accuracy are two concepts which seem to get confused frequently. It's a subtle but important

distinction: precision refers to how finely an estimate is specified, whereas accuracy refers to how close an estimate

is to the true value.

Assessing causality is the reason of most statistical analysis, yet its subtleties escape many statistical consumers. For

one to determine a causal inference, he/she must have random assignment.

Graphical representation- Tufte introduces to indicate the relationship between the data and the graphic is a

number he calls "the Lie Factor". This is simply the ratio of the difference in the proportion of the graphic elements

versus the difference in the quantities they represent

1.Be sure your sample is representative of the population in which you're interested. Be sure you understand the

assumptions of your statistical procedures, and be sure they are satisfied. Beware of hierarchically organized (non-

independent) data; use techniques designed to deal with them.

2. Be sure you have the right amount of power--not too little, not too much.

3. Be sure to use the best measurement tools available. If your measures have error, take that fact into account.

Beware of multiple comparisons. If you must do a lot of tests, try to replicate or use cross-validation to verify your

results.

4. Keep clear in your mind what you're trying to discover--don't be seduced by stars in your tables; look at

magnitudes rather than p-values.

5. Use numerical notation in a rational way--don't confuse precision with accuracy (and don't let the consumers of

your work do so, either).

6.Be sure you understand the conditions for causal inference. If you need to make causal inference, try to use

random assignment. If that's not possible, you'll have to devote a lot of effort to uncovering causal relationships with

a variety of approaches to the question.

7. Be sure your graphs are accurate and reflect the data variation clearly.

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