# Descriptive and Inferentail Statistics

**Topics:**Statistics, Statistical inference, Scientific method

**Pages:**3 (888 words)

**Published:**June 8, 2011

Descriptive and Inferential Statistics Paper

Statistics are used for descriptive purposes, and can be helpful in understanding a large amount of information, such as crime rates. Using statistics to record and analyze information, helps to solve problems, back up the solution to the problems, and eliminate some of the guess work. In Psychology there has to be a variable or variables to be organized, measured, and expressed as quantities. Information is usually in the form of a frequency table, histogram, or bar graph to show the increase or decline in occurrences over a period of time. Psychological statistics is used to keep track of behavioral reactions to certain stimuli, and since the human behavior is so unpredictable, psychologists use statistics instead of trying to predict outcomes of situations. Functions of Statistics

Understanding and interpreting data can be difficult if one does not possess the necessary skills to do so. The knowledge of how and why statistics are used is a very important first step to gaining these skills. The following few paragraphs will offer an explanation of the functions of statistics, which will describe how different types of statistics are used to make sense of data that can sometimes be confusing. Both descriptive and inferential statistics serve the same basic functions. The main functions of statistics are to organize and interpret data and to allow one to form hypotheses (Weinclaw, 2008). Statistics help to make sense of data by allowing one to organize and manipulate the data to come to a conclusion. This allows people to gain a better, although not perfect, understanding of phenomena occurring in the real world. Instead of yielding exact results statistics provide probabilities, which allow one to make generalizations about a whole population based on data gathered through surveys or samples of a population. Thus statistics are used to suggest a degree of...

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