Academic journal article Nursing Education Perspectives

Using and Interpreting Statistics: A Practical Text for the Health, Behavioral, and Social Sciences

Academic journal article Nursing Education Perspectives

Using and Interpreting Statistics: A Practical Text for the Health, Behavioral, and Social Sciences

Article excerpt

Using and Interpreting Statistics: A Practical Text for the Health, Behavioral, and Social Sciences by Eric W. Corty, PhD; St. Louis, MO: Elsevier, 2007; 608 pages, $64.95 (soft cover)

Statistics textbooks are not generally fun to read. As it is likely that I eventually will be assigned to teach statistics, I reviewed Corty's book as a potential textbook for nursing students. The word practical in the title caught my attention, suggesting that this book provides a different approach, one best suited for math phobic students required to take an introductory course in statistics.

Indeed, this text does provide a different approach to explaining statistics that is notable from the very first paragraph. Corty writes in the first person, as if he were having a personal conversation with the reader. He opens with the following: "I may be odd, but I love to teach statistics. As a psychologist, I teach a variety of courses...However, as I tell my statistics class and my sex class, I'd rather teach statistics than sex."

Advanced statistical techniques are not part of this book, which is intended specifically for introductory statistics. The first six chapters focus on how to summarize and present data, how to transform scores, and how to calculate confidence intervals. The remaining chapters address Pearson r, independentsamples t test, one-way ANOVAs, repeated-measures ANOVAs, and chi-square tests for contingency tables.

To facilitate easy and enjoyable learning of an often-challenging subject, Corty devised a six-step process for statistical analysis used consistently throughout the book. …

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