What’s in a Name? Moderation and Interaction, Independent and Predictor Variables

April 14th, 2014 by

One of the most confusing things about statistical analysis is the different vocabulary used for the same, or nearly-but-not-quite-the-same, concepts.

Sometimes this happens just because the same analysis was developed separately within different fields and named twice.

So people in different fields use different terms for the same statistical concept.  Try to collaborate with a colleague in a different field and you may find yourself awed by the crazy statistics they’re insisting on.

Other times, there is a level of detail that is implied by one term that isn’t true of the wider, more generic term.  This level of detail is often about how the role of variables or effects affects the interpretation of output. (more…)