I’ve recently had some questions from more qualitative-minded researchers about resources for understanding the foundations of quantitative methods. In attempting to compile a few resources to share, I found it a bit frustrating that there were relatively few ‘theoretical,’ easy-to-understand materials for beginners in this area (read: math-free). While I feel it’s also important to understand the technical details of statistical tools, I hope that a series of ‘math-free intros’ can ease some fear and pique the interest of those considering incorporating quantitative analyses.
So let’s start with the foundation: descriptive statistics.
What are descriptive statistics?
Descriptive statistics are pretty accurately named: they describe basic features of your data. They don’t make inferences or find conclusions. If you compare it to literature, descriptive statistics would be a simple narrative tale. In art, they would be the initial sketch or outline. The good thing about descriptive statistics is that they don’t require…
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