I believe there are people who still asking what is statistics. There are so many advantages by knowing and learning about the meaning and definition of statistics. As you know, statistics is an essential part of academic life, especially in research.
Unfortunately, there are many people who do not understand what is the right meaning of statistics and the benefit of it. If you know these, it can help you in any aspect of your life.
Statistics is also known as the part of mathematical science. Almost, all of the statistics are related to calculation, estimation, multiplying, dividing, etc.
Maybe (I hope it’s just my opinion), that’s why some people are facing difficulties in learning statistics. Therefore, several people choose to avoid this subject because it’s pretty hard and confusing.
Is that true?
What is Statistics?
There are several meaning and definition of statistics.
According to the American Statistical Association, statistics is the study of measurement, control, managing, and how to convey uncertainty from a data.
According to A.L. Bowley, statistics is the science of calculation or the study of mean or averages.
Croxton and Cowden define statistics as the study of collecting, processing, presenting, analyzing, and interpreting numerical data.
According to Horace Secrist, statistics are a collection of facts or reality that occur for certain reasons and are presented in the form of numbers, calculated, and estimated according to standardized measurements and collected systematically for specific purposes.
In general, statistics is the study of data collection, processing, presentation, and analysis that can produce useful information and can be used in various things that are useful in human life.
Statistic is the number that represents the sample. It is an estimate of the population parameter.
Hoping you really get what is statistics now.
What is the difference between statistic and statistics?
In some cases, people are confused about the difference between statistic and statistics. Well, let me make it clear for you.
Statistics is the science. It consists of explanations, formulas, and various methodologies commonly used in various censuses and surveys.
If you want to continue your study, statistics is a good option.
In university, they have faculty of statistics, not faculty of statistic.
On the other hand, a statistic is the result of the statistical process itself.
For example, you have a data set of student height of a whole school. Based on those, you took 30 samples and create a simple analysis. You can find the mean, variance, and modus. Well. Mean, variance, and modus are a statistic.
The process and the formula you use to find the mean, variance, etc, they are called statistics.
The differences in data and statistic
Maybe, you are also confused about the difference between data and statistics. What is the relationship between data and statistics?
Data is the plural form of datum
Datum is single information about characteristics or information of an object or fact.
Data is a compilation of several datum.
We would like to know how
See the example below!
We want to find out what the average cost is for parents to send their children to a favorite university in a month. In total, there are 100 students at the university.
Based on the number of students, 6 parents were chosen as survey respondents. They answer based on the table below.
According to the report, we can classify one by one:
Datum : Ani’s Parents cost in average are 3000 USD.
Data : Alex’s parents cost are 3.000 USD. May’s parents cost are 5.000 USD.
Population : all of student’s parents at the favorite university.
Parameter : average cost of all the student’s parents at the favorite university.
Statistic : The average cost for parents to send their children to a favorite university is 4.750 USD per month.
Statistics : the formula we use to get average cost.
Can you get the point? This is a simple example which use basic formula. In another case, it would be challenging.
The elements of statistic
If you understand the definition and the explanation above, statistic should require these elements:
- Statistics are averages of a set of information or facts
Example: a student’s body weight is not statistics. However, the average height of students in a class is statistics.
- Statistics are presented in the form of numbers, both in processing and estimation
Statistics are able to do good data processing which is not in the form of numbers, but all the data will eventually be changed in the form of numbers.
For example, when you want to know the level of satisfaction of the population on the performance of the government in a district. With the statistical method, we still have to classify this level of satisfaction in a number of levels, for example, 1 to be very satisfied, 2 to be satisfied, 3 to be dissatisfied, 4 to be dissatisfied, 5 to be very dissatisfied.
- Statistics have a causal relationship
Statistics can explain the relationship and the relationship between one thing and another logically. For example, to increase state revenues, the government can take policies to increase taxes or increase business license rates.
- Statistics must be collected in a systematic way for specific purposes
All statistical processes must produce useful and appropriate output. Without purpose, all things that are done will be in vain. And also, why do you want to do comprehensive steps if you have no goal?
- Statistics must use a structured methodology to maintain the accuracy of results
In using statistics, there are many methodologies and procedures that must be obeyed so that the resulting value is truly accurate and can describe the actual conditions.
For example, in data collection. All data must be sourced from the respondent, not based on personal estimates or even filling in by the surveyor.
- Statistics must be able to describe the relationship between one thing and another thing that is comparable in size
The important thing to remember in statistics is never to compare everything without a clear foundation of knowledge. Set the same measurement standards so that the results obtained are representative
For example, you can compare a baby’s height with a teen’s height. Or, you can also compare between rice yields given fertilizer and rice that is not fertilized. Don’t compare adult height with tree height. This doesn’t make sense!
The advantage of using statistics
You already know that statistics is a long and systematic process. After we do all of these, of course, we should get some benefits and advantages of it. Isn’t it?
1. To present facts and information in a more scientific form
Without statistics, many things in the world are only assumptions or opinions which are full of uncertainties and based on their own perspectives. Using statistics, all of these things can be proven in an acceptable and scientific way.
For example, we do not know whether the average value of school A student is higher than school B. Using statistics, we can know this for sure without needing to hear opinions that are uncertain.
2. To simplify complicated and large amounts of data
Managing data in various types and large quantities is not easy. Statistics can help us simplify this in the form of tables, graphs, or diagrams.
3. To make a comparison between two or more things easier
One purpose of using statistics is to compare one thing with another. For example, what is the average income between residents of City Y and City Z. What is the correlation between the final grades of students and study hours?
4. Basic decision and policy-making
On a macro scale, statistics are always used as material for evaluation and decision making. For example, if the rate of economic growth looks slower, the government needs to take special economic incentive policies, price stabilization, etc.
5. Knowledge and useful information
Statistics are not just numbers, but information that has value and benefits. For example, we know the level of living costs for every country in the world. With these statistics, we can find out that the cost of living in a country turns out to be diverse without the need to come directly to the region.
6. The scientific method for measuring various things
Statistics allows us to measure many things. Both things are quantitative, to qualitative. Statistics proved to be a compulsory science for every researcher.
7. Predict future events
Statistics are often used to predict how an event will occur in the future. For example, by paying attention to the patterns and trends that have occurred in the past few years, we can estimate how the opportunities occur in the future along with how they affect them.
You can find many examples of demographic data using statistical formula.
Type of Statistics
Based on the type of statistics are distinguished by 2, namely:
1. Descriptive statistics
The most used statistics in life is descriptive statistics.
It focuses on analyzing and providing an overall picture of the data in the form of tables, diagrams, graphs, infographics, etc.
As a basic and fundamental form, it helps us in presenting data without detailed and in-depth analysis so that we cannot draw conclusions or deep insight based on the results we get.
Some examples of using descriptive statistics are average, mode, median, etc.
2. Inferential statistics
Inferential statistics is a statistical process that aims to analyze a portion of data (samples) and draw conclusions as a whole (population). This analysis is very effective in forecasting, estimating, and various testing in research.
For example, we want to analyze whether female students have a higher mathematical score than male. To prove this, we took a sample of 30 men and 30 women and conducted a hypothesis test.
The result, it turns out, is not true. Male students have higher mathematical values than female students.
Statistics is an inseparable part of our life. Almost all of our life pars is integrated with statistics. A country needs statistics to make the right decision. A company has to use statistics if they want to improve product sales. Even a football match use statistics to make the game more interesting.
By knowing the meaning and definition of statistics, we will understand how important statistics to make our life better.