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What is Statistics?

Information is one of the principal driving forces of modern economies. There is the need for adequate information in organizations, and institutions for purposes of management and planning. This necessitates the application of statistics. Statistics, as a scientific discipline, is the study of data collection, organization, analysis and interpretation of the resulting information.

Essentially, there are two types of statistics: inferential statistics and descriptive statistics. Inferential statistics, simply, utilizes sampling procedures to draw relevant conclusions about a given population. On the other hand, descriptive statistics involves techniques of organizing, summarizing and picturing information from raw data. Besides, there are also levels of measurement in statistics which include ordinal, nominal, interval and ratio levels. Ordinal level involves arranging data values in some order although the difference between them is meaningless. Nominal level, on the other hand, has qualities without ranking. Besides, interval level involves ordering of data values; their differences bear meaning. Finally, ratio level is similar to interval level, only that it involves a starting point (true zero).

Statistics plays a critical role in business decision making: providing a quantitative basis for making fundamental decisions concerning a business entity. One example of is demographic figures for national planning. Secondly, statistics is crucial in obtaining requisite for any project development. Thirdly, statistics helps in ascertaining market trends. Hence it helps business entities to make sound decisions in respect of product marketing for profitability and sustainability. In short, statistics is a vital discipline to individuals and organizations for planning and informed decision-making processes.

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