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Finding and Using Statistics: Using Statistics

Using Statistics

Need to write a paper that includes statistics?  Learn how to use statistics more effectively in your writing by visiting the Purdue Online Writing Lab.  Their website includes quick tips, writing descriptive statistics, writing inferential statistics, key terms and using visuals with statistics.  Take a look!

Writing with Statistics

Evauluating Statistics

Ask the following questions when attempting to evaluate the statistical data:


Who is the author(s)? What are the author(s) qualifications/authority?


What is the date range of the data and is it intended to be current or historical?


Who is the intended audience? What type of publication is the data published in and is the data clearly represented?


Are the statistics accurate? Can they be verified? Is there bias?


Note: Evaluation of statistical data and analysis of statistical data are two different things.

Evaluation is determining the quality of the data e.g. the research methodology used to gather the statistics, reliability of the research tool.  

Analysis provides the description of amounts, proportions and patterns in the data e.g. pie charts, standard deviations.


Credit:  CQ University Library, Australia.


STATS  Non-profit, non-partisan Statistical Assessment Service - STATS - has become a much-valued resource on the use and abuse of science and statistics in the media.


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