Social Statistics

Social statistics is the use of statistical measurement systems to study human behavior in a social environment. This can be accomplished through polling a group of people, evaluating a subset of data obtained about a group of people, or by observation and statistical analysis of a set of data that relates to people and their behaviors.

Social scientists use social statistics for many purposes, including:

  • the evaluation of the quality of services available to a group or organization,
  • analyzing behaviors of groups of people in their environment and special situations,
  • determining the wants of people through statistical sampling.

Statistics in the social sciences

Statistics and statistical analyses have become a key feature of social science. Statistics is employed in economics, psychology, political science, sociology and anthropology. There is a debate regarding the uses and value of statistical methods in social science, especially in political science, with some statisticians[who?] questioning the policy conclusions of political partisans who overestimate the interpretive power that non-robust statistical methods such as simple and multiple linear regression allow. Indeed, an important axiom that social scientists cite, but often forget, is that "correlation does not imply causation."

The use of statistics has become so widespread in the social sciences that many universities such as Harvard, have developed institutes focusing on "quantitative social science." Harvard's Institute for Quantitative Social Science focuses mainly on fields like political science that incorporate the advanced causal statistical models that Bayesian methods provide. However, some experts in causality feel that these claims of causal statistics are overstated,[1][2]

Statistical methods in social sciences

Methods, techniques and concepts used in quantitative social sciences include:

See also

Further reading


  1. ^ Pearl, Judea 2001, Bayesianism and Causality, or, Why I am only a Half-Bayesian, Foundations of Bayesianism, Kluwer Applied Logic Series, Kluwer Academic Publishers, Vol 24, D. Cornfield and J. Williamson (Eds.) 19-36.
  2. ^

External links

Social science statistics centers

links section)

Statistical databases for social science

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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