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HSS2381 (30)
Chapter 2

HSS2381 Chapter 2: Chapter 2: Frequency Distributions: Tabulating & Displaying Data summary

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University of Ottawa
Health Sciences
Eleanor Riesen

Chapter 2: Frequency Distributions: Tabulating Displaying Data Frequency Distributions A frequency distribution is a systematic arrangement of data values, with a count of how many times each value occurred in a dataset Constructing a Frequency Distribution List each data value in a sequence ascending order 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 Tally each occurrence of the value Total the frequencies for each value (f ) The sum of f s for all data values must equal the sample size: f = N Elements of a Typical Frequency Distribution: Data values Absolute frequencies (counts) Relative frequencies (percentages) Cumulative relative frequencies (percentage for given score value, combined with percentages for all preceding values) Frequency Distributions and Measurement Levels: Frequency distributions can be constructed for variables measured at any level of measurement But for categorical (nominallevel) variables, cumulative frequencies do not make sense Frequency Distributions for Variables with Many Values: When a variable has many possible values, a regular frequency distribution may be unwieldy In a grouped frequency distribution contiguous values are grouped into sets (class intervals ) Use intervals that are psychologically appealing (e.g., in groups of 2, 5, 10, 50, etc.) Reporting Frequency Information: Narratively in text (e.g., 83 of study participants were male) Frequency distribution table (multiple variables often presented in a single table) Graph: Different graphs used for different types of data Different Types of Graphs: Bar graphs: Used for nominal (many ordinal) level variables Bar graphs have a horizontal dimension (X axis ) that specifies categories (data values) The vertical dimension (Y axis ) specifies either frequencies or percentages Bars for each category drawn to the height that indicates the frequency or Pie Charts: Also used for nominal (many ordinal) level variables Circle is divided into pieshaped wedges corresponding to percentages for a given category or data value All pieces add up to 100; Place wedges in order, with biggest wedge starting at 12 oclock Histograms: Used for interval and ratio level data Similar to a bar graph, with an X and Y axis but adjacent values are on a continuumbars touch Data values on X axis are arranged from lowest to highest Bars are drawn to height to show frequency or percentage (Y axis)
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