The Art of Data Analysis: How to Answer Almost any Question Using Basic Statistics


thumbnail image: The Art of Data Analysis: How to Answer Almost any Question Using Basic Statistics

A friendly and accessible approach to applying statistics in the real world

With an emphasis on critical thinking, The Art of Data Analysis: How to Answer Almost Any Question Using Basic Statistics presents fun and unique examples, guides readers through the entire data collection and analysis process, and introduces basic statistical concepts along the way.

Leaving proofs and complicated mathematics behind, the author portrays the more engaging side of statistics and emphasizes its role as a problem-solving tool.  In addition, light-hearted case studies illustrate the application of statistics to real data analyses, highlighting the strengths and weaknesses of commonly used techniques. Written for the growing academic and industrial population that uses statistics in everyday life, The Art of Data Analysis: How to Answer Almost Any Question Using Basic Statistics highlights important issues that often arise when collecting and sifting through data. Featured concepts include:

• Descriptive statistics
• Analysis of variance
• Probability and sample distributions
• Confidence intervals
• Hypothesis tests
• Regression
• Statistical correlation
• Data collection
• Statistical analysis with graphs

Fun and inviting from beginning to end, The Art of Data Analysis is an ideal book for students as well as managers and researchers in industry, medicine, or government who face statistical questions and are in need of an intuitive understanding of basic statistical reasoning.

Preface ix

PART 1 The Basics

1. Statistics: The Life of the Party 3

2. Lions, and Tigers, and . . . Bigfoot? Oh, My: How Questionable Data Can Screw Up an Otherwise Perfectly Good Statistical Analysis 7

3. Asteroid Belts and Spandex Cars: Using Descriptive Statistics to Answer Your Most Weighty Questions 23

4. Baseball, Game Shows, and Sidekicks: Who Cares about Probability Anyway? 43

5. What It’s Like to Be Normal: Probability Distributions and One Rule That Could Make You Wildly Popular 63

PART 2 What a Few Estimates and a Little Probability Can Do for You

6. Men Are Insensitive and Women Are Illogical. Really: Asserting Your Stereotypes with Confidence 89

7. Godzilla versus King Kong: How Hypothesis Tests Can Be Used to Settle the Battle of the Movie Monsters 109

8. Lab Rats and Roommates: Analysis of Variance and How to Channel Your Inner Mad Scientist 129

9. When the Zombie Flu Went Viral: Regressing the Myth Out of Urban Myths 143

Appendix A: Critical Values for the Standard Normal Distribution 161

Appendix B: Critical Values for the T-Distribution 163

Appendix C: Critical Values for the Chi-Squared Distribution 165

Glossary 167

References 173

Index 175

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Published features on are checked for statistical accuracy by a panel from the European Network for Business and Industrial Statistics (ENBIS)   to whom Wiley and express their gratitude. This panel are: Ron Kenett, David Steinberg, Shirley Coleman, Irena Ograjenšek, Fabrizio Ruggeri, Rainer Göb, Philippe Castagliola, Xavier Tort-Martorell, Bart De Ketelaere, Antonio Pievatolo, Martina Vandebroek, Lance Mitchell, Gilbert Saporta, Helmut Waldl and Stelios Psarakis.