Statistics Should Be Interpreted with Caution as They Can Be Misleading; They Can Both Lie and Tell the Truth.

Topics: Statistics, Scientific method, Sample Pages: 2 (428 words) Published: November 8, 2008
Statistics mean ‘a group of number that represents fact or describe a situation’ (Macmillan English Dictionary, 2007). ‘Statistics’ is the word which seems far away from our daily life, but actually we see or listen about statistics every day, such as the oil price news, the economic news, etc. Many statistical studies have been done by many institutions. Before publishing the statistic results the researchers have to collect the data, after that analyse the collected data then, interpret results. However, statistics can be misleading if they are wrongly interpreted by the researcher or not treated with caution by the reader. Statistics give us many beneficial data and also assist us to predict the results, but we need interpret with caution, otherwise they can be misleading. This essay will explain how statistics can be beneficial to people, how statistics mislead people and suggest the best way to understand statistics.

At present, statistics have been implemented in many sectors such as businesses, education, agricultural, etc. They use statistics in order to reduce the risk and avoid making decision based on only own experiences. It is obvious that people rely on statistics. It is not easy to conduct research and get statistical results. The researchers have to do many steps to get the results, for example, design the research, collected data, analyzed data, interpreted data, etc. These steps made people trust on statistic results which present in the public. What is more, statistical results also provide benefits to the public. For instance, weather forecasts, they can predict the weather based on the pervious data. Before a heavy storm happens they are able to warn people and prepare for the storm.

Nevertheless, statistics do not always tell the truth. Sometimes the statistical results mislead people. The main problem with statistics is that people like favourable numbers to back up a decision. For example, when choosing an Internet...
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