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Statistics question [Nov. 21st, 2006|12:53 pm]
Doctoral Psych Students' Dissertation Community
I've emailed my committee member that's helping me with the statistical part of my dissertation, but just in case anyone had some wisdom for me:

All of my variables are categorical except for age. As such, the correlation measure I should use is the Spearman rho, correct? As opposed to the Pearson r which is used for variables that are intervals, such as scores. If I do, in fact, need to use the Spearman rho, can excel do that? Excel has a sort of all-purpose correlation function and a Pearson coefficient function but I don't see anything about Spearman rho.

Does anyone know?


From: cousin_annie
2006-11-22 05:10 pm (UTC)
You can't use any form of correlation, parametric or not, unless your variables are AT LEAST at the ordinal level of measurement. Otherwise, the concept of a correlation makes no sense.

Spearman's rho is used to correlate two ordinal variables or continuous variables that don't meet parametric test assumptions. If your variables are truly categorical (i.e., you can't place them in a logical order or hierarchy to say one is MORE or GREATER than another, etc.), then you can't use rho.

If you're looking at measures of association among categorical variables, you're probably going to use a chi-square test of some sort.
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From: psyd_or_bust
2006-11-25 02:39 am (UTC)
Duh. Yes of course. Thanks!
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