Data Analysis Methods

Topics: Mean, Statistics, Arithmetic mean Pages: 14 (4895 words) Published: February 17, 2013
Qualitative dataQualitative data is a categorical measurement expressed not in terms of numbers, but rather by means of a natural language description. In statistics, it is often used interchangeably with "categorical" data. For example: favorite color = "yellow"

height = "tall"
When the categories may be ordered, these are called ordinal variables. Categorical variables that judge size (small, medium, large, etc.) are ordinal variables. Attitudes (strongly disagree, disagree, neutral, agree, strongly agree) are also ordinal variables, however we may not know which value is the best or worst of these issues. Note that the distance between these categories is not something we can measure. Quantitative dataQuantitative data is a numerical measurement expressed not by means of a natural language description, but rather in terms of numbers. However, not all numbers are continuous and measurable. For example, the social security number is a number, but not something that one can add or subtract.

For example: favorite color = "450 nm"
height = "1.8 m"
Quantitative data always are associated with a scale measure. Probably the most common scale type is the ratio-scale. Observations of this type are on a scale that has a meaningful zero value but also have an equidistant measure (i.e., the difference between 10 and 20 is the same as the difference between 100 and 110). For example, a 10 year-old girl is twice as old as a 5 year-old girl. Since you can measure zero years, time is a ratio-scale variable. Money is another common ratio-scale quantitative measure. Observations that you count are usually ratio-scale (e.g., number of widgets). A more general quantitative measure is the interval scale. Interval scales also have a equidistant measure. However, the doubling principle breaks down in this scale. A temperature of 50 degrees Celsius is not "half as hot" as a temperature of 100, but a difference of 10 degrees indicates the same difference in temperature anywhere along the scale. The Kelvin temperature scale, however, constitutes a ratio scale because on the Kelvin scale zero indicates absolute zero in temperature, the complete absence of heat. So one can say, for example, that 200 degrees Kelvin is twice as hot as 100 degrees Kelvin. The differences between qualitative and quantitative data:

Quantitative data is data that is relating to, measuring, or measured by the quantity of something, rather than its quality. ex: the number of people in a town Qualitative data is data that can be captured that is not numerical in nature ex: the color of people's skin. Thus, essentially the distinction is that quantitative data deals with numbers and numerical values of what is being tested, where as qualitative data deals with the quality of what is being tested. 

Qualitative data's description cannot be describe in numbers. Quantitative data's description can only be described in numbers. Cross-sectional data, or a cross section of a study population, in statistics and econometrics is a type of one-dimensional data set. Cross-sectional data refers to data collected by observing many subjects (such as individuals, firms or countries/regions) at the same point of time, or without regard to differences in time. Analysis of cross-sectional data usually consists of comparing the differences among the subjects. For example, we want to measure current obesity levels in a population. We could draw a sample of 1,000 people randomly from that population (also known as a cross section of that population), measure their weight and height, and calculate what percentage of that sample is categorized as obese. For example, 30% of our sample were categorized as obese. This cross-sectional sample provides us with a snapshot of that population, at that one point in time. Note that we do not know based on one cross-sectional sample if obesity is increasing or decreasing; we can only describe the current proportion. Cross-sectional data differs...
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