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"Thank you and thank you again for providing a complete, well-structured, and easy-to-understand online resource. Every other website or snobbish research paper has not deigned to explain things in words consisting of less than four syllables. I was tossed to and fro like a man holding on to a frail plank that he calls his determination until I came across your electronic textbook...You have cleared the air for me. You have enlightened. You have illuminated. You have educated me."

— Mr. Daniel Chen Kwok Lee
October 2013

"As a professional medical statistician of some 40 years standing, I can unreservedly recommend this textbook as a resource for self-education, teaching and on-the-fly illustration of specific statistical methodology in one-to-one statistical consulting. The topic area coverage is unparalleled in a single textbook, drawing in the usual suspects, but many not-so-usual: Classification trees, Neural networks, Structural equation modeling, to name but a few. This book is an absolute friend-in-need when you need to get to the point fast, without fuss, in a way that anyone can understand."

— Mr. Paul W. Strike
November 2012

"Excellent book. Should come in hardcover and quality paper. The best companion for researcher in industry and academic alike."

— Dr. Jauhari Dahalan
Universiti Utara Malaysia
Spring, 2012

"Just wanted to congratulate whoever wrote the 'Experimental Design' page. It seems very clear and complete. I haven't found another summary on the internet that's close to as good. Kudos!"

— James A. Cherry
March, 2012

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StatSoft has freely provided the Electronic Statistics Textbook as a public service since 1995.

This textbook offers training in the understanding and application of statistics and data mining. The material was developed at the StatSoft R&D department based on many years of teaching undergraduate and graduate statistics courses. It covers a wide variety of applications, including laboratory research (biomedical, agricultural, etc.), business statistics, credit scoring, forecasting, social science statistics and survey research, data mining, engineering and quality control applications, and many others.

The Electronic Statistics Textbook begins with an overview of the relevant elementary (pivotal) concepts and continues with a more in depth exploration of specific areas of statistics, organized by "modules" and accessible by buttons, representing classes of analytic techniques. A glossary of statistical terms and a list of references for further study are included.

Proper citation:

  • (Electronic Version): StatSoft, Inc. (2013). Electronic Statistics Textbook. Tulsa, OK: StatSoft. WEB:
  • (Printed Version): Hill, T. & Lewicki, P. (2007). STATISTICS: Methods and Applications. StatSoft, Tulsa, OK.

Overview of Elementary Concepts in Statistics. In this introduction, we will briefly discuss those elementary statistical concepts that provide the necessary foundations for more specialized expertise in any area of statistical data analysis. The selected topics illustrate the basic assumptions of most statistical methods and/or have been demonstrated in research to be necessary components of one's general understanding of the "quantitative nature" of reality (Nisbet, et al., 1987). Because of space limitations, we will focus mostly on the functional aspects of the concepts discussed and the presentation will be very short.

Further information on each of those concepts can be found in the Introductory Overview and Examples sections of this manual and in statistical textbooks. Recommended introductory textbooks are: Kachigan (1986), and Runyon and Haber (1976); for a more advanced discussion of elementary theory and assumptions of statistics, see the classic books by Hays (1988), and Kendall and Stuart (1979).