Front cover image for Statistics as principled argument

Statistics as principled argument

Robert P. Abelson (Author), John W. Tukey (Donor)
The author delves into the too-often-dismissed problems of interpreting quantitative data and then presenting them in the context of a coherent story about one's research ... The focus of the book is that the purpose of statistics is to organize a useful argument from quantitative evidence, using a form of principled rhetoric. Five criteria, described by the acronym MAGIC (magnitude, articulation, generality, interestingness, and credibility) are proposed as crucial features of a persuasive, principled argument. Particular statistical methods are discussed, with minimum use of formulas and heavy data sets. The ideas throughout the book revolve around elementary probability theory, t tests, and simple issues of research design. It is therefore assumed that the reader has already had some access to elementary statistics. Many examples are included to explain the connection of statistics to substantive claims about real phenomena
Print Book, English, 1995
L. Erlbaum Associates, Hillsdale, N.J., 1995
xv, 221 pages ; 24 cm
9780805805277, 9780805805284, 9781410601155, 0805805273, 0805805281, 1410601153
Abelson's laws
1. Making claims with statistics
2. Elementary arguments and the role of chance
3. Magnitude of effects
4. Styles of rhetoric
5. On suspecting fishiness
6. Articulation of results : ticks and buts
7. Generality of effects
8. Interestingness of argument
9. Credibility of argument
APS Library copy presented by the estate of John W. Tukey, 2002