Misuse of Statistics
It's funny sometimes when you read a few statistical
facts and wonder if they really can be true. Statistics does usually
have a very powerful impact and more often than not, can create an impression
on our minds of certain things. However, sometimes these so-called statistical
calculations and discoveries need to be taken with a pinch of salt. Given
below are few examples of where statistics has been grossly misused:
Children with bigger feet spell better?
Quite astonished? Don't be! This was the result of a
survey about measuring factors affecting the spelling ability of children.
When the final analysis came about, it was noted that children with bigger
feet possessed superior spelling skills! Upon further analysis you will
find that older children had bigger feet and quite certainly, older children
would normally possess better spellings than their younger counterparts!
States with higher divorce rates have lower death rates!
So should you shift? States with higher divorce rates
were States which had a larger share of young population, which would
quite obviously mean lower death rates!
These are just two examples but they should suffice
to make the point that 'statistics can be grossly misused and misleading'.
When looking at statistics, you need to look at all factors being taken
into account and the correlation between each factor. Jumping to startling
conclusions can be amusing and may even interest people but they wouldn't
be fulfilling the very purpose of statistics and statistical findings.
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