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Scales of Measurement


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Scales of Measurement

  1. 1. Scales of Measurement Refers to the type of scale on which the DV is measured Certain statistics can be calculated on some scales, but not others Four scales Nominal Ordinal Interval Ratio 1
  2. 2. Scales of Measurement Nominal Qualitative measures – classify into Ordinal nonnumeric categories Interval Quantitative measures – measurement is Ratio numerical 2
  3. 3. Nominal Scale Assign responses to different categories No numerical difference between categories Examples Gender Marital status State of residence College major SSN Zip code Student ID 3
  4. 4. Ordinal Scale Set of categories that are ordered from least to most Don’t know numerical distance from each category to the next Examples Miss America results – first place, runner-up, second, third Military rank Letter grade in class Degrees held Medical condition (satisfactory, serious, guarded, critical) Rank order of your preference from 1 to 4 of Ruffles, Doritos, Cheetos, Fritos 4
  5. 5. Interval Scale Scale with values, and there is the same numerical distance between each value This scale has an arbitrary zero point (no true meaningful zero point) Examples How appealing is this cereal box to children? Not at all very -3 -2 -1 0 1 2 3 Current temperature Many behavioral science questionnaires IQ 5
  6. 6. Ratio Scale Scale with scores where there is the same numerical distance between each score The scale has a true, meaningful zero point that anchors the scale Only scale that allows you to make ratio comparisons, such as “Maribel’s income is 35% more than Susan’s” Examples Weight of a package of candy Number of times you return to a restaurant after visiting it the first time Amount of money in your checking account Number of questions correct on a quiz Distance from San Antonio to Laredo 6