by Kim Love and Karen Grace-Martin
Statistics terminology is confusing.
Sometimes different terms are used to mean the same thing, often in different fields of application. Sometimes the same term is used to mean different things. And sometimes very similar terms are used to describe related but distinct statistical concepts.
The field of statistics has a terminology problem.
It affects students’ ability to learn statistics. It affects researchers’ ability to communicate with statisticians; with collaborators in different fields; and of course, with the general public.
It’s easy to think the real issue is that statistical concepts are difficult. That is true. It’s not the whole truth, though. (more…)