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## Hypothesis Testing | A Step-by-Step Guide with Easy Examples

Published on November 8, 2019 by Rebecca Bevans . Revised on June 22, 2023.

Hypothesis testing is a formal procedure for investigating our ideas about the world using statistics . It is most often used by scientists to test specific predictions, called hypotheses, that arise from theories.

There are 5 main steps in hypothesis testing:

- State your research hypothesis as a null hypothesis and alternate hypothesis (H o ) and (H a or H 1 ).
- Collect data in a way designed to test the hypothesis.
- Perform an appropriate statistical test .
- Decide whether to reject or fail to reject your null hypothesis.
- Present the findings in your results and discussion section.

Though the specific details might vary, the procedure you will use when testing a hypothesis will always follow some version of these steps.

## Table of contents

Step 1: state your null and alternate hypothesis, step 2: collect data, step 3: perform a statistical test, step 4: decide whether to reject or fail to reject your null hypothesis, step 5: present your findings, other interesting articles, frequently asked questions about hypothesis testing.

After developing your initial research hypothesis (the prediction that you want to investigate), it is important to restate it as a null (H o ) and alternate (H a ) hypothesis so that you can test it mathematically.

The alternate hypothesis is usually your initial hypothesis that predicts a relationship between variables. The null hypothesis is a prediction of no relationship between the variables you are interested in.

- H 0 : Men are, on average, not taller than women. H a : Men are, on average, taller than women.

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For a statistical test to be valid , it is important to perform sampling and collect data in a way that is designed to test your hypothesis. If your data are not representative, then you cannot make statistical inferences about the population you are interested in.

There are a variety of statistical tests available, but they are all based on the comparison of within-group variance (how spread out the data is within a category) versus between-group variance (how different the categories are from one another).

If the between-group variance is large enough that there is little or no overlap between groups, then your statistical test will reflect that by showing a low p -value . This means it is unlikely that the differences between these groups came about by chance.

Alternatively, if there is high within-group variance and low between-group variance, then your statistical test will reflect that with a high p -value. This means it is likely that any difference you measure between groups is due to chance.

Your choice of statistical test will be based on the type of variables and the level of measurement of your collected data .

- an estimate of the difference in average height between the two groups.
- a p -value showing how likely you are to see this difference if the null hypothesis of no difference is true.

Based on the outcome of your statistical test, you will have to decide whether to reject or fail to reject your null hypothesis.

In most cases you will use the p -value generated by your statistical test to guide your decision. And in most cases, your predetermined level of significance for rejecting the null hypothesis will be 0.05 – that is, when there is a less than 5% chance that you would see these results if the null hypothesis were true.

In some cases, researchers choose a more conservative level of significance, such as 0.01 (1%). This minimizes the risk of incorrectly rejecting the null hypothesis ( Type I error ).

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The results of hypothesis testing will be presented in the results and discussion sections of your research paper , dissertation or thesis .

In the results section you should give a brief summary of the data and a summary of the results of your statistical test (for example, the estimated difference between group means and associated p -value). In the discussion , you can discuss whether your initial hypothesis was supported by your results or not.

In the formal language of hypothesis testing, we talk about rejecting or failing to reject the null hypothesis. You will probably be asked to do this in your statistics assignments.

However, when presenting research results in academic papers we rarely talk this way. Instead, we go back to our alternate hypothesis (in this case, the hypothesis that men are on average taller than women) and state whether the result of our test did or did not support the alternate hypothesis.

If your null hypothesis was rejected, this result is interpreted as “supported the alternate hypothesis.”

These are superficial differences; you can see that they mean the same thing.

You might notice that we don’t say that we reject or fail to reject the alternate hypothesis . This is because hypothesis testing is not designed to prove or disprove anything. It is only designed to test whether a pattern we measure could have arisen spuriously, or by chance.

If we reject the null hypothesis based on our research (i.e., we find that it is unlikely that the pattern arose by chance), then we can say our test lends support to our hypothesis . But if the pattern does not pass our decision rule, meaning that it could have arisen by chance, then we say the test is inconsistent with our hypothesis .

If you want to know more about statistics , methodology , or research bias , make sure to check out some of our other articles with explanations and examples.

- Normal distribution
- Descriptive statistics
- Measures of central tendency
- Correlation coefficient

Methodology

- Cluster sampling
- Stratified sampling
- Types of interviews
- Cohort study
- Thematic analysis

Research bias

- Implicit bias
- Cognitive bias
- Survivorship bias
- Availability heuristic
- Nonresponse bias
- Regression to the mean

Hypothesis testing is a formal procedure for investigating our ideas about the world using statistics. It is used by scientists to test specific predictions, called hypotheses , by calculating how likely it is that a pattern or relationship between variables could have arisen by chance.

A hypothesis states your predictions about what your research will find. It is a tentative answer to your research question that has not yet been tested. For some research projects, you might have to write several hypotheses that address different aspects of your research question.

A hypothesis is not just a guess — it should be based on existing theories and knowledge. It also has to be testable, which means you can support or refute it through scientific research methods (such as experiments, observations and statistical analysis of data).

Null and alternative hypotheses are used in statistical hypothesis testing . The null hypothesis of a test always predicts no effect or no relationship between variables, while the alternative hypothesis states your research prediction of an effect or relationship.

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Statistics Made Easy

## Introduction to Hypothesis Testing

A statistical hypothesis is an assumption about a population parameter .

For example, we may assume that the mean height of a male in the U.S. is 70 inches.

The assumption about the height is the statistical hypothesis and the true mean height of a male in the U.S. is the population parameter .

A hypothesis test is a formal statistical test we use to reject or fail to reject a statistical hypothesis.

## The Two Types of Statistical Hypotheses

To test whether a statistical hypothesis about a population parameter is true, we obtain a random sample from the population and perform a hypothesis test on the sample data.

There are two types of statistical hypotheses:

The null hypothesis , denoted as H 0 , is the hypothesis that the sample data occurs purely from chance.

The alternative hypothesis , denoted as H 1 or H a , is the hypothesis that the sample data is influenced by some non-random cause.

## Hypothesis Tests

A hypothesis test consists of five steps:

1. State the hypotheses.

State the null and alternative hypotheses. These two hypotheses need to be mutually exclusive, so if one is true then the other must be false.

2. Determine a significance level to use for the hypothesis.

Decide on a significance level. Common choices are .01, .05, and .1.

3. Find the test statistic.

Find the test statistic and the corresponding p-value. Often we are analyzing a population mean or proportion and the general formula to find the test statistic is: (sample statistic – population parameter) / (standard deviation of statistic)

4. Reject or fail to reject the null hypothesis.

Using the test statistic or the p-value, determine if you can reject or fail to reject the null hypothesis based on the significance level.

The p-value tells us the strength of evidence in support of a null hypothesis. If the p-value is less than the significance level, we reject the null hypothesis.

5. Interpret the results.

Interpret the results of the hypothesis test in the context of the question being asked.

## The Two Types of Decision Errors

There are two types of decision errors that one can make when doing a hypothesis test:

Type I error: You reject the null hypothesis when it is actually true. The probability of committing a Type I error is equal to the significance level, often called alpha , and denoted as α.

Type II error: You fail to reject the null hypothesis when it is actually false. The probability of committing a Type II error is called the Power of the test or Beta , denoted as β.

## One-Tailed and Two-Tailed Tests

A statistical hypothesis can be one-tailed or two-tailed.

A one-tailed hypothesis involves making a “greater than” or “less than ” statement.

For example, suppose we assume the mean height of a male in the U.S. is greater than or equal to 70 inches. The null hypothesis would be H0: µ ≥ 70 inches and the alternative hypothesis would be Ha: µ < 70 inches.

A two-tailed hypothesis involves making an “equal to” or “not equal to” statement.

For example, suppose we assume the mean height of a male in the U.S. is equal to 70 inches. The null hypothesis would be H0: µ = 70 inches and the alternative hypothesis would be Ha: µ ≠ 70 inches.

Note: The “equal” sign is always included in the null hypothesis, whether it is =, ≥, or ≤.

Related: What is a Directional Hypothesis?

## Types of Hypothesis Tests

There are many different types of hypothesis tests you can perform depending on the type of data you’re working with and the goal of your analysis.

The following tutorials provide an explanation of the most common types of hypothesis tests:

Introduction to the One Sample t-test Introduction to the Two Sample t-test Introduction to the Paired Samples t-test Introduction to the One Proportion Z-Test Introduction to the Two Proportion Z-Test

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## Hypothesis to Be Tested: Definition and 4 Steps for Testing with Example

## What Is Hypothesis Testing?

Hypothesis testing, sometimes called significance testing, is an act in statistics whereby an analyst tests an assumption regarding a population parameter. The methodology employed by the analyst depends on the nature of the data used and the reason for the analysis.

Hypothesis testing is used to assess the plausibility of a hypothesis by using sample data. Such data may come from a larger population, or from a data-generating process. The word "population" will be used for both of these cases in the following descriptions.

## Key Takeaways

- Hypothesis testing is used to assess the plausibility of a hypothesis by using sample data.
- The test provides evidence concerning the plausibility of the hypothesis, given the data.
- Statistical analysts test a hypothesis by measuring and examining a random sample of the population being analyzed.
- The four steps of hypothesis testing include stating the hypotheses, formulating an analysis plan, analyzing the sample data, and analyzing the result.

## How Hypothesis Testing Works

In hypothesis testing, an analyst tests a statistical sample, with the goal of providing evidence on the plausibility of the null hypothesis.

Statistical analysts test a hypothesis by measuring and examining a random sample of the population being analyzed. All analysts use a random population sample to test two different hypotheses: the null hypothesis and the alternative hypothesis.

The null hypothesis is usually a hypothesis of equality between population parameters; e.g., a null hypothesis may state that the population mean return is equal to zero. The alternative hypothesis is effectively the opposite of a null hypothesis (e.g., the population mean return is not equal to zero). Thus, they are mutually exclusive , and only one can be true. However, one of the two hypotheses will always be true.

The null hypothesis is a statement about a population parameter, such as the population mean, that is assumed to be true.

## 4 Steps of Hypothesis Testing

All hypotheses are tested using a four-step process:

- The first step is for the analyst to state the hypotheses.
- The second step is to formulate an analysis plan, which outlines how the data will be evaluated.
- The third step is to carry out the plan and analyze the sample data.
- The final step is to analyze the results and either reject the null hypothesis, or state that the null hypothesis is plausible, given the data.

## Real-World Example of Hypothesis Testing

If, for example, a person wants to test that a penny has exactly a 50% chance of landing on heads, the null hypothesis would be that 50% is correct, and the alternative hypothesis would be that 50% is not correct.

Mathematically, the null hypothesis would be represented as Ho: P = 0.5. The alternative hypothesis would be denoted as "Ha" and be identical to the null hypothesis, except with the equal sign struck-through, meaning that it does not equal 50%.

A random sample of 100 coin flips is taken, and the null hypothesis is then tested. If it is found that the 100 coin flips were distributed as 40 heads and 60 tails, the analyst would assume that a penny does not have a 50% chance of landing on heads and would reject the null hypothesis and accept the alternative hypothesis.

If, on the other hand, there were 48 heads and 52 tails, then it is plausible that the coin could be fair and still produce such a result. In cases such as this where the null hypothesis is "accepted," the analyst states that the difference between the expected results (50 heads and 50 tails) and the observed results (48 heads and 52 tails) is "explainable by chance alone."

Some staticians attribute the first hypothesis tests to satirical writer John Arbuthnot in 1710, who studied male and female births in England after observing that in nearly every year, male births exceeded female births by a slight proportion. Arbuthnot calculated that the probability of this happening by chance was small, and therefore it was due to “divine providence.”

## What is Hypothesis Testing?

Hypothesis testing refers to a process used by analysts to assess the plausibility of a hypothesis by using sample data. In hypothesis testing, statisticians formulate two hypotheses: the null hypothesis and the alternative hypothesis. A null hypothesis determines there is no difference between two groups or conditions, while the alternative hypothesis determines that there is a difference. Researchers evaluate the statistical significance of the test based on the probability that the null hypothesis is true.

## What are the Four Key Steps Involved in Hypothesis Testing?

Hypothesis testing begins with an analyst stating two hypotheses, with only one that can be right. The analyst then formulates an analysis plan, which outlines how the data will be evaluated. Next, they move to the testing phase and analyze the sample data. Finally, the analyst analyzes the results and either rejects the null hypothesis or states that the null hypothesis is plausible, given the data.

## What are the Benefits of Hypothesis Testing?

Hypothesis testing helps assess the accuracy of new ideas or theories by testing them against data. This allows researchers to determine whether the evidence supports their hypothesis, helping to avoid false claims and conclusions. Hypothesis testing also provides a framework for decision-making based on data rather than personal opinions or biases. By relying on statistical analysis, hypothesis testing helps to reduce the effects of chance and confounding variables, providing a robust framework for making informed conclusions.

## What are the Limitations of Hypothesis Testing?

Hypothesis testing relies exclusively on data and doesn’t provide a comprehensive understanding of the subject being studied. Additionally, the accuracy of the results depends on the quality of the available data and the statistical methods used. Inaccurate data or inappropriate hypothesis formulation may lead to incorrect conclusions or failed tests. Hypothesis testing can also lead to errors, such as analysts either accepting or rejecting a null hypothesis when they shouldn’t have. These errors may result in false conclusions or missed opportunities to identify significant patterns or relationships in the data.

## The Bottom Line

Hypothesis testing refers to a statistical process that helps researchers and/or analysts determine the reliability of a study. By using a well-formulated hypothesis and set of statistical tests, individuals or businesses can make inferences about the population that they are studying and draw conclusions based on the data presented. There are different types of hypothesis testing, each with their own set of rules and procedures. However, all hypothesis testing methods have the same four step process, which includes stating the hypotheses, formulating an analysis plan, analyzing the sample data, and analyzing the result. Hypothesis testing plays a vital part of the scientific process, helping to test assumptions and make better data-based decisions.

Sage. " Introduction to Hypothesis Testing. " Page 4.

Elder Research. " Who Invented the Null Hypothesis? "

Formplus. " Hypothesis Testing: Definition, Uses, Limitations and Examples. "

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## Hypothesis Testing

Hypothesis testing is a tool for making statistical inferences about the population data. It is an analysis tool that tests assumptions and determines how likely something is within a given standard of accuracy. Hypothesis testing provides a way to verify whether the results of an experiment are valid.

A null hypothesis and an alternative hypothesis are set up before performing the hypothesis testing. This helps to arrive at a conclusion regarding the sample obtained from the population. In this article, we will learn more about hypothesis testing, its types, steps to perform the testing, and associated examples.

## What is Hypothesis Testing in Statistics?

Hypothesis testing uses sample data from the population to draw useful conclusions regarding the population probability distribution . It tests an assumption made about the data using different types of hypothesis testing methodologies. The hypothesis testing results in either rejecting or not rejecting the null hypothesis.

## Hypothesis Testing Definition

Hypothesis testing can be defined as a statistical tool that is used to identify if the results of an experiment are meaningful or not. It involves setting up a null hypothesis and an alternative hypothesis. These two hypotheses will always be mutually exclusive. This means that if the null hypothesis is true then the alternative hypothesis is false and vice versa. An example of hypothesis testing is setting up a test to check if a new medicine works on a disease in a more efficient manner.

## Null Hypothesis

The null hypothesis is a concise mathematical statement that is used to indicate that there is no difference between two possibilities. In other words, there is no difference between certain characteristics of data. This hypothesis assumes that the outcomes of an experiment are based on chance alone. It is denoted as \(H_{0}\). Hypothesis testing is used to conclude if the null hypothesis can be rejected or not. Suppose an experiment is conducted to check if girls are shorter than boys at the age of 5. The null hypothesis will say that they are the same height.

## Alternative Hypothesis

The alternative hypothesis is an alternative to the null hypothesis. It is used to show that the observations of an experiment are due to some real effect. It indicates that there is a statistical significance between two possible outcomes and can be denoted as \(H_{1}\) or \(H_{a}\). For the above-mentioned example, the alternative hypothesis would be that girls are shorter than boys at the age of 5.

## Hypothesis Testing P Value

In hypothesis testing, the p value is used to indicate whether the results obtained after conducting a test are statistically significant or not. It also indicates the probability of making an error in rejecting or not rejecting the null hypothesis.This value is always a number between 0 and 1. The p value is compared to an alpha level, \(\alpha\) or significance level. The alpha level can be defined as the acceptable risk of incorrectly rejecting the null hypothesis. The alpha level is usually chosen between 1% to 5%.

## Hypothesis Testing Critical region

All sets of values that lead to rejecting the null hypothesis lie in the critical region. Furthermore, the value that separates the critical region from the non-critical region is known as the critical value.

## Hypothesis Testing Formula

Depending upon the type of data available and the size, different types of hypothesis testing are used to determine whether the null hypothesis can be rejected or not. The hypothesis testing formula for some important test statistics are given below:

- z = \(\frac{\overline{x}-\mu}{\frac{\sigma}{\sqrt{n}}}\). \(\overline{x}\) is the sample mean, \(\mu\) is the population mean, \(\sigma\) is the population standard deviation and n is the size of the sample.
- t = \(\frac{\overline{x}-\mu}{\frac{s}{\sqrt{n}}}\). s is the sample standard deviation.
- \(\chi ^{2} = \sum \frac{(O_{i}-E_{i})^{2}}{E_{i}}\). \(O_{i}\) is the observed value and \(E_{i}\) is the expected value.

We will learn more about these test statistics in the upcoming section.

## Types of Hypothesis Testing

Selecting the correct test for performing hypothesis testing can be confusing. These tests are used to determine a test statistic on the basis of which the null hypothesis can either be rejected or not rejected. Some of the important tests used for hypothesis testing are given below.

## Hypothesis Testing Z Test

A z test is a way of hypothesis testing that is used for a large sample size (n ≥ 30). It is used to determine whether there is a difference between the population mean and the sample mean when the population standard deviation is known. It can also be used to compare the mean of two samples. It is used to compute the z test statistic. The formulas are given as follows:

- One sample: z = \(\frac{\overline{x}-\mu}{\frac{\sigma}{\sqrt{n}}}\).
- Two samples: z = \(\frac{(\overline{x_{1}}-\overline{x_{2}})-(\mu_{1}-\mu_{2})}{\sqrt{\frac{\sigma_{1}^{2}}{n_{1}}+\frac{\sigma_{2}^{2}}{n_{2}}}}\).

## Hypothesis Testing t Test

The t test is another method of hypothesis testing that is used for a small sample size (n < 30). It is also used to compare the sample mean and population mean. However, the population standard deviation is not known. Instead, the sample standard deviation is known. The mean of two samples can also be compared using the t test.

- One sample: t = \(\frac{\overline{x}-\mu}{\frac{s}{\sqrt{n}}}\).
- Two samples: t = \(\frac{(\overline{x_{1}}-\overline{x_{2}})-(\mu_{1}-\mu_{2})}{\sqrt{\frac{s_{1}^{2}}{n_{1}}+\frac{s_{2}^{2}}{n_{2}}}}\).

## Hypothesis Testing Chi Square

The Chi square test is a hypothesis testing method that is used to check whether the variables in a population are independent or not. It is used when the test statistic is chi-squared distributed.

## One Tailed Hypothesis Testing

One tailed hypothesis testing is done when the rejection region is only in one direction. It can also be known as directional hypothesis testing because the effects can be tested in one direction only. This type of testing is further classified into the right tailed test and left tailed test.

Right Tailed Hypothesis Testing

The right tail test is also known as the upper tail test. This test is used to check whether the population parameter is greater than some value. The null and alternative hypotheses for this test are given as follows:

\(H_{0}\): The population parameter is ≤ some value

\(H_{1}\): The population parameter is > some value.

If the test statistic has a greater value than the critical value then the null hypothesis is rejected

Left Tailed Hypothesis Testing

The left tail test is also known as the lower tail test. It is used to check whether the population parameter is less than some value. The hypotheses for this hypothesis testing can be written as follows:

\(H_{0}\): The population parameter is ≥ some value

\(H_{1}\): The population parameter is < some value.

The null hypothesis is rejected if the test statistic has a value lesser than the critical value.

## Two Tailed Hypothesis Testing

In this hypothesis testing method, the critical region lies on both sides of the sampling distribution. It is also known as a non - directional hypothesis testing method. The two-tailed test is used when it needs to be determined if the population parameter is assumed to be different than some value. The hypotheses can be set up as follows:

\(H_{0}\): the population parameter = some value

\(H_{1}\): the population parameter ≠ some value

The null hypothesis is rejected if the test statistic has a value that is not equal to the critical value.

## Hypothesis Testing Steps

Hypothesis testing can be easily performed in five simple steps. The most important step is to correctly set up the hypotheses and identify the right method for hypothesis testing. The basic steps to perform hypothesis testing are as follows:

- Step 1: Set up the null hypothesis by correctly identifying whether it is the left-tailed, right-tailed, or two-tailed hypothesis testing.
- Step 2: Set up the alternative hypothesis.
- Step 3: Choose the correct significance level, \(\alpha\), and find the critical value.
- Step 4: Calculate the correct test statistic (z, t or \(\chi\)) and p-value.
- Step 5: Compare the test statistic with the critical value or compare the p-value with \(\alpha\) to arrive at a conclusion. In other words, decide if the null hypothesis is to be rejected or not.

## Hypothesis Testing Example

The best way to solve a problem on hypothesis testing is by applying the 5 steps mentioned in the previous section. Suppose a researcher claims that the mean average weight of men is greater than 100kgs with a standard deviation of 15kgs. 30 men are chosen with an average weight of 112.5 Kgs. Using hypothesis testing, check if there is enough evidence to support the researcher's claim. The confidence interval is given as 95%.

Step 1: This is an example of a right-tailed test. Set up the null hypothesis as \(H_{0}\): \(\mu\) = 100.

Step 2: The alternative hypothesis is given by \(H_{1}\): \(\mu\) > 100.

Step 3: As this is a one-tailed test, \(\alpha\) = 100% - 95% = 5%. This can be used to determine the critical value.

1 - \(\alpha\) = 1 - 0.05 = 0.95

0.95 gives the required area under the curve. Now using a normal distribution table, the area 0.95 is at z = 1.645. A similar process can be followed for a t-test. The only additional requirement is to calculate the degrees of freedom given by n - 1.

Step 4: Calculate the z test statistic. This is because the sample size is 30. Furthermore, the sample and population means are known along with the standard deviation.

z = \(\frac{\overline{x}-\mu}{\frac{\sigma}{\sqrt{n}}}\).

\(\mu\) = 100, \(\overline{x}\) = 112.5, n = 30, \(\sigma\) = 15

z = \(\frac{112.5-100}{\frac{15}{\sqrt{30}}}\) = 4.56

Step 5: Conclusion. As 4.56 > 1.645 thus, the null hypothesis can be rejected.

## Hypothesis Testing and Confidence Intervals

Confidence intervals form an important part of hypothesis testing. This is because the alpha level can be determined from a given confidence interval. Suppose a confidence interval is given as 95%. Subtract the confidence interval from 100%. This gives 100 - 95 = 5% or 0.05. This is the alpha value of a one-tailed hypothesis testing. To obtain the alpha value for a two-tailed hypothesis testing, divide this value by 2. This gives 0.05 / 2 = 0.025.

Related Articles:

- Probability and Statistics
- Data Handling

Important Notes on Hypothesis Testing

- Hypothesis testing is a technique that is used to verify whether the results of an experiment are statistically significant.
- It involves the setting up of a null hypothesis and an alternate hypothesis.
- There are three types of tests that can be conducted under hypothesis testing - z test, t test, and chi square test.
- Hypothesis testing can be classified as right tail, left tail, and two tail tests.

## Examples on Hypothesis Testing

- Example 1: The average weight of a dumbbell in a gym is 90lbs. However, a physical trainer believes that the average weight might be higher. A random sample of 5 dumbbells with an average weight of 110lbs and a standard deviation of 18lbs. Using hypothesis testing check if the physical trainer's claim can be supported for a 95% confidence level. Solution: As the sample size is lesser than 30, the t-test is used. \(H_{0}\): \(\mu\) = 90, \(H_{1}\): \(\mu\) > 90 \(\overline{x}\) = 110, \(\mu\) = 90, n = 5, s = 18. \(\alpha\) = 0.05 Using the t-distribution table, the critical value is 2.132 t = \(\frac{\overline{x}-\mu}{\frac{s}{\sqrt{n}}}\) t = 2.484 As 2.484 > 2.132, the null hypothesis is rejected. Answer: The average weight of the dumbbells may be greater than 90lbs
- Example 2: The average score on a test is 80 with a standard deviation of 10. With a new teaching curriculum introduced it is believed that this score will change. On random testing, the score of 38 students, the mean was found to be 88. With a 0.05 significance level, is there any evidence to support this claim? Solution: This is an example of two-tail hypothesis testing. The z test will be used. \(H_{0}\): \(\mu\) = 80, \(H_{1}\): \(\mu\) ≠ 80 \(\overline{x}\) = 88, \(\mu\) = 80, n = 36, \(\sigma\) = 10. \(\alpha\) = 0.05 / 2 = 0.025 The critical value using the normal distribution table is 1.96 z = \(\frac{\overline{x}-\mu}{\frac{\sigma}{\sqrt{n}}}\) z = \(\frac{88-80}{\frac{10}{\sqrt{36}}}\) = 4.8 As 4.8 > 1.96, the null hypothesis is rejected. Answer: There is a difference in the scores after the new curriculum was introduced.
- Example 3: The average score of a class is 90. However, a teacher believes that the average score might be lower. The scores of 6 students were randomly measured. The mean was 82 with a standard deviation of 18. With a 0.05 significance level use hypothesis testing to check if this claim is true. Solution: The t test will be used. \(H_{0}\): \(\mu\) = 90, \(H_{1}\): \(\mu\) < 90 \(\overline{x}\) = 110, \(\mu\) = 90, n = 6, s = 18 The critical value from the t table is -2.015 t = \(\frac{\overline{x}-\mu}{\frac{s}{\sqrt{n}}}\) t = \(\frac{82-90}{\frac{18}{\sqrt{6}}}\) t = -1.088 As -1.088 > -2.015, we fail to reject the null hypothesis. Answer: There is not enough evidence to support the claim.

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## FAQs on Hypothesis Testing

What is hypothesis testing.

Hypothesis testing in statistics is a tool that is used to make inferences about the population data. It is also used to check if the results of an experiment are valid.

## What is the z Test in Hypothesis Testing?

The z test in hypothesis testing is used to find the z test statistic for normally distributed data . The z test is used when the standard deviation of the population is known and the sample size is greater than or equal to 30.

## What is the t Test in Hypothesis Testing?

The t test in hypothesis testing is used when the data follows a student t distribution . It is used when the sample size is less than 30 and standard deviation of the population is not known.

## What is the formula for z test in Hypothesis Testing?

The formula for a one sample z test in hypothesis testing is z = \(\frac{\overline{x}-\mu}{\frac{\sigma}{\sqrt{n}}}\) and for two samples is z = \(\frac{(\overline{x_{1}}-\overline{x_{2}})-(\mu_{1}-\mu_{2})}{\sqrt{\frac{\sigma_{1}^{2}}{n_{1}}+\frac{\sigma_{2}^{2}}{n_{2}}}}\).

## What is the p Value in Hypothesis Testing?

The p value helps to determine if the test results are statistically significant or not. In hypothesis testing, the null hypothesis can either be rejected or not rejected based on the comparison between the p value and the alpha level.

## What is One Tail Hypothesis Testing?

When the rejection region is only on one side of the distribution curve then it is known as one tail hypothesis testing. The right tail test and the left tail test are two types of directional hypothesis testing.

## What is the Alpha Level in Two Tail Hypothesis Testing?

To get the alpha level in a two tail hypothesis testing divide \(\alpha\) by 2. This is done as there are two rejection regions in the curve.

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## Keyboard Shortcuts

S.3 hypothesis testing.

In reviewing hypothesis tests, we start first with the general idea. Then, we keep returning to the basic procedures of hypothesis testing, each time adding a little more detail.

The general idea of hypothesis testing involves:

- Making an initial assumption.
- Collecting evidence (data).
- Based on the available evidence (data), deciding whether to reject or not reject the initial assumption.

Every hypothesis test — regardless of the population parameter involved — requires the above three steps.

## Example S.3.1

Is normal body temperature really 98.6 degrees f section .

Consider the population of many, many adults. A researcher hypothesized that the average adult body temperature is lower than the often-advertised 98.6 degrees F. That is, the researcher wants an answer to the question: "Is the average adult body temperature 98.6 degrees? Or is it lower?" To answer his research question, the researcher starts by assuming that the average adult body temperature was 98.6 degrees F.

Then, the researcher went out and tried to find evidence that refutes his initial assumption. In doing so, he selects a random sample of 130 adults. The average body temperature of the 130 sampled adults is 98.25 degrees.

Then, the researcher uses the data he collected to make a decision about his initial assumption. It is either likely or unlikely that the researcher would collect the evidence he did given his initial assumption that the average adult body temperature is 98.6 degrees:

- If it is likely , then the researcher does not reject his initial assumption that the average adult body temperature is 98.6 degrees. There is not enough evidence to do otherwise.
- either the researcher's initial assumption is correct and he experienced a very unusual event;
- or the researcher's initial assumption is incorrect.

In statistics, we generally don't make claims that require us to believe that a very unusual event happened. That is, in the practice of statistics, if the evidence (data) we collected is unlikely in light of the initial assumption, then we reject our initial assumption.

## Example S.3.2

Criminal trial analogy section .

One place where you can consistently see the general idea of hypothesis testing in action is in criminal trials held in the United States. Our criminal justice system assumes "the defendant is innocent until proven guilty." That is, our initial assumption is that the defendant is innocent.

In the practice of statistics, we make our initial assumption when we state our two competing hypotheses -- the null hypothesis ( H 0 ) and the alternative hypothesis ( H A ). Here, our hypotheses are:

- H 0 : Defendant is not guilty (innocent)
- H A : Defendant is guilty

In statistics, we always assume the null hypothesis is true . That is, the null hypothesis is always our initial assumption.

The prosecution team then collects evidence — such as finger prints, blood spots, hair samples, carpet fibers, shoe prints, ransom notes, and handwriting samples — with the hopes of finding "sufficient evidence" to make the assumption of innocence refutable.

In statistics, the data are the evidence.

The jury then makes a decision based on the available evidence:

- If the jury finds sufficient evidence — beyond a reasonable doubt — to make the assumption of innocence refutable, the jury rejects the null hypothesis and deems the defendant guilty. We behave as if the defendant is guilty.
- If there is insufficient evidence, then the jury does not reject the null hypothesis . We behave as if the defendant is innocent.

In statistics, we always make one of two decisions. We either "reject the null hypothesis" or we "fail to reject the null hypothesis."

## Errors in Hypothesis Testing Section

Did you notice the use of the phrase "behave as if" in the previous discussion? We "behave as if" the defendant is guilty; we do not "prove" that the defendant is guilty. And, we "behave as if" the defendant is innocent; we do not "prove" that the defendant is innocent.

This is a very important distinction! We make our decision based on evidence not on 100% guaranteed proof. Again:

- If we reject the null hypothesis, we do not prove that the alternative hypothesis is true.
- If we do not reject the null hypothesis, we do not prove that the null hypothesis is true.

We merely state that there is enough evidence to behave one way or the other. This is always true in statistics! Because of this, whatever the decision, there is always a chance that we made an error .

Let's review the two types of errors that can be made in criminal trials:

Table S.3.2 shows how this corresponds to the two types of errors in hypothesis testing.

Note that, in statistics, we call the two types of errors by two different names -- one is called a "Type I error," and the other is called a "Type II error." Here are the formal definitions of the two types of errors:

There is always a chance of making one of these errors. But, a good scientific study will minimize the chance of doing so!

## Making the Decision Section

Recall that it is either likely or unlikely that we would observe the evidence we did given our initial assumption. If it is likely , we do not reject the null hypothesis. If it is unlikely , then we reject the null hypothesis in favor of the alternative hypothesis. Effectively, then, making the decision reduces to determining "likely" or "unlikely."

In statistics, there are two ways to determine whether the evidence is likely or unlikely given the initial assumption:

- We could take the " critical value approach " (favored in many of the older textbooks).
- Or, we could take the " P -value approach " (what is used most often in research, journal articles, and statistical software).

In the next two sections, we review the procedures behind each of these two approaches. To make our review concrete, let's imagine that μ is the average grade point average of all American students who major in mathematics. We first review the critical value approach for conducting each of the following three hypothesis tests about the population mean $\mu$:

## In Practice

- We would want to conduct the first hypothesis test if we were interested in concluding that the average grade point average of the group is more than 3.
- We would want to conduct the second hypothesis test if we were interested in concluding that the average grade point average of the group is less than 3.
- And, we would want to conduct the third hypothesis test if we were only interested in concluding that the average grade point average of the group differs from 3 (without caring whether it is more or less than 3).

Upon completing the review of the critical value approach, we review the P -value approach for conducting each of the above three hypothesis tests about the population mean \(\mu\). The procedures that we review here for both approaches easily extend to hypothesis tests about any other population parameter.

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## Hypothesis Testing

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A hypothesis test is a statistical inference method used to test the significance of a proposed (hypothesized) relation between population statistics (parameters) and their corresponding sample estimators . In other words, hypothesis tests are used to determine if there is enough evidence in a sample to prove a hypothesis true for the entire population.

The test considers two hypotheses: the null hypothesis , which is a statement meant to be tested, usually something like "there is no effect" with the intention of proving this false, and the alternate hypothesis , which is the statement meant to stand after the test is performed. The two hypotheses must be mutually exclusive ; moreover, in most applications, the two are complementary (one being the negation of the other). The test works by comparing the \(p\)-value to the level of significance (a chosen target). If the \(p\)-value is less than or equal to the level of significance, then the null hypothesis is rejected.

When analyzing data, only samples of a certain size might be manageable as efficient computations. In some situations the error terms follow a continuous or infinite distribution, hence the use of samples to suggest accuracy of the chosen test statistics. The method of hypothesis testing gives an advantage over guessing what distribution or which parameters the data follows.

## Definitions and Methodology

Hypothesis test and confidence intervals.

In statistical inference, properties (parameters) of a population are analyzed by sampling data sets. Given assumptions on the distribution, i.e. a statistical model of the data, certain hypotheses can be deduced from the known behavior of the model. These hypotheses must be tested against sampled data from the population.

The null hypothesis \((\)denoted \(H_0)\) is a statement that is assumed to be true. If the null hypothesis is rejected, then there is enough evidence (statistical significance) to accept the alternate hypothesis \((\)denoted \(H_1).\) Before doing any test for significance, both hypotheses must be clearly stated and non-conflictive, i.e. mutually exclusive, statements. Rejecting the null hypothesis, given that it is true, is called a type I error and it is denoted \(\alpha\), which is also its probability of occurrence. Failing to reject the null hypothesis, given that it is false, is called a type II error and it is denoted \(\beta\), which is also its probability of occurrence. Also, \(\alpha\) is known as the significance level , and \(1-\beta\) is known as the power of the test. \(H_0\) \(\textbf{is true}\)\(\hspace{15mm}\) \(H_0\) \(\textbf{is false}\) \(\textbf{Reject}\) \(H_0\)\(\hspace{10mm}\) Type I error Correct Decision \(\textbf{Reject}\) \(H_1\) Correct Decision Type II error The test statistic is the standardized value following the sampled data under the assumption that the null hypothesis is true, and a chosen particular test. These tests depend on the statistic to be studied and the assumed distribution it follows, e.g. the population mean following a normal distribution. The \(p\)-value is the probability of observing an extreme test statistic in the direction of the alternate hypothesis, given that the null hypothesis is true. The critical value is the value of the assumed distribution of the test statistic such that the probability of making a type I error is small.

Methodologies: Given an estimator \(\hat \theta\) of a population statistic \(\theta\), following a probability distribution \(P(T)\), computed from a sample \(\mathcal{S},\) and given a significance level \(\alpha\) and test statistic \(t^*,\) define \(H_0\) and \(H_1;\) compute the test statistic \(t^*.\) \(p\)-value Approach (most prevalent): Find the \(p\)-value using \(t^*\) (right-tailed). If the \(p\)-value is at most \(\alpha,\) reject \(H_0\). Otherwise, reject \(H_1\). Critical Value Approach: Find the critical value solving the equation \(P(T\geq t_\alpha)=\alpha\) (right-tailed). If \(t^*>t_\alpha\), reject \(H_0\). Otherwise, reject \(H_1\). Note: Failing to reject \(H_0\) only means inability to accept \(H_1\), and it does not mean to accept \(H_0\).

Assume a normally distributed population has recorded cholesterol levels with various statistics computed. From a sample of 100 subjects in the population, the sample mean was 214.12 mg/dL (milligrams per deciliter), with a sample standard deviation of 45.71 mg/dL. Perform a hypothesis test, with significance level 0.05, to test if there is enough evidence to conclude that the population mean is larger than 200 mg/dL. Hypothesis Test We will perform a hypothesis test using the \(p\)-value approach with significance level \(\alpha=0.05:\) Define \(H_0\): \(\mu=200\). Define \(H_1\): \(\mu>200\). Since our values are normally distributed, the test statistic is \(z^*=\frac{\bar X - \mu_0}{\frac{s}{\sqrt{n}}}=\frac{214.12 - 200}{\frac{45.71}{\sqrt{100}}}\approx 3.09\). Using a standard normal distribution, we find that our \(p\)-value is approximately \(0.001\). Since the \(p\)-value is at most \(\alpha=0.05,\) we reject \(H_0\). Therefore, we can conclude that the test shows sufficient evidence to support the claim that \(\mu\) is larger than \(200\) mg/dL.

If the sample size was smaller, the normal and \(t\)-distributions behave differently. Also, the question itself must be managed by a double-tail test instead.

Assume a population's cholesterol levels are recorded and various statistics are computed. From a sample of 25 subjects, the sample mean was 214.12 mg/dL (milligrams per deciliter), with a sample standard deviation of 45.71 mg/dL. Perform a hypothesis test, with significance level 0.05, to test if there is enough evidence to conclude that the population mean is not equal to 200 mg/dL. Hypothesis Test We will perform a hypothesis test using the \(p\)-value approach with significance level \(\alpha=0.05\) and the \(t\)-distribution with 24 degrees of freedom: Define \(H_0\): \(\mu=200\). Define \(H_1\): \(\mu\neq 200\). Using the \(t\)-distribution, the test statistic is \(t^*=\frac{\bar X - \mu_0}{\frac{s}{\sqrt{n}}}=\frac{214.12 - 200}{\frac{45.71}{\sqrt{25}}}\approx 1.54\). Using a \(t\)-distribution with 24 degrees of freedom, we find that our \(p\)-value is approximately \(2(0.068)=0.136\). We have multiplied by two since this is a two-tailed argument, i.e. the mean can be smaller than or larger than. Since the \(p\)-value is larger than \(\alpha=0.05,\) we fail to reject \(H_0\). Therefore, the test does not show sufficient evidence to support the claim that \(\mu\) is not equal to \(200\) mg/dL.

The complement of the rejection on a two-tailed hypothesis test (with significance level \(\alpha\)) for a population parameter \(\theta\) is equivalent to finding a confidence interval \((\)with confidence level \(1-\alpha)\) for the population parameter \(\theta\). If the assumption on the parameter \(\theta\) falls inside the confidence interval, then the test has failed to reject the null hypothesis \((\)with \(p\)-value greater than \(\alpha).\) Otherwise, if \(\theta\) does not fall in the confidence interval, then the null hypothesis is rejected in favor of the alternate \((\)with \(p\)-value at most \(\alpha).\)

- Statistics (Estimation)
- Normal Distribution
- Correlation
- Confidence Intervals

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Lesson 10 of 24 By Avijeet Biswal

## Table of Contents

In today’s data-driven world , decisions are based on data all the time. Hypothesis plays a crucial role in that process, whether it may be making business decisions, in the health sector, academia, or in quality improvement. Without hypothesis & hypothesis tests, you risk drawing the wrong conclusions and making bad decisions. In this tutorial, you will look at Hypothesis Testing in Statistics.

## What Is Hypothesis Testing in Statistics?

Hypothesis Testing is a type of statistical analysis in which you put your assumptions about a population parameter to the test. It is used to estimate the relationship between 2 statistical variables.

Let's discuss few examples of statistical hypothesis from real-life -

- A teacher assumes that 60% of his college's students come from lower-middle-class families.
- A doctor believes that 3D (Diet, Dose, and Discipline) is 90% effective for diabetic patients.

Now that you know about hypothesis testing, look at the two types of hypothesis testing in statistics.

## Hypothesis Testing Formula

Z = ( x̅ – μ0 ) / (σ /√n)

- Here, x̅ is the sample mean,
- μ0 is the population mean,
- σ is the standard deviation,
- n is the sample size.

## How Hypothesis Testing Works?

An analyst performs hypothesis testing on a statistical sample to present evidence of the plausibility of the null hypothesis. Measurements and analyses are conducted on a random sample of the population to test a theory. Analysts use a random population sample to test two hypotheses: the null and alternative hypotheses.

The null hypothesis is typically an equality hypothesis between population parameters; for example, a null hypothesis may claim that the population means return equals zero. The alternate hypothesis is essentially the inverse of the null hypothesis (e.g., the population means the return is not equal to zero). As a result, they are mutually exclusive, and only one can be correct. One of the two possibilities, however, will always be correct.

## Your Dream Career is Just Around The Corner!

## Null Hypothesis and Alternate Hypothesis

The Null Hypothesis is the assumption that the event will not occur. A null hypothesis has no bearing on the study's outcome unless it is rejected.

H0 is the symbol for it, and it is pronounced H-naught.

The Alternate Hypothesis is the logical opposite of the null hypothesis. The acceptance of the alternative hypothesis follows the rejection of the null hypothesis. H1 is the symbol for it.

Let's understand this with an example.

A sanitizer manufacturer claims that its product kills 95 percent of germs on average.

To put this company's claim to the test, create a null and alternate hypothesis.

H0 (Null Hypothesis): Average = 95%.

Alternative Hypothesis (H1): The average is less than 95%.

Another straightforward example to understand this concept is determining whether or not a coin is fair and balanced. The null hypothesis states that the probability of a show of heads is equal to the likelihood of a show of tails. In contrast, the alternate theory states that the probability of a show of heads and tails would be very different.

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## Hypothesis Testing Calculation With Examples

Let's consider a hypothesis test for the average height of women in the United States. Suppose our null hypothesis is that the average height is 5'4". We gather a sample of 100 women and determine that their average height is 5'5". The standard deviation of population is 2.

To calculate the z-score, we would use the following formula:

z = ( x̅ – μ0 ) / (σ /√n)

z = (5'5" - 5'4") / (2" / √100)

z = 0.5 / (0.045)

We will reject the null hypothesis as the z-score of 11.11 is very large and conclude that there is evidence to suggest that the average height of women in the US is greater than 5'4".

## Steps of Hypothesis Testing

Step 1: specify your null and alternate hypotheses.

It is critical to rephrase your original research hypothesis (the prediction that you wish to study) as a null (Ho) and alternative (Ha) hypothesis so that you can test it quantitatively. Your first hypothesis, which predicts a link between variables, is generally your alternate hypothesis. The null hypothesis predicts no link between the variables of interest.

## Step 2: Gather Data

For a statistical test to be legitimate, sampling and data collection must be done in a way that is meant to test your hypothesis. You cannot draw statistical conclusions about the population you are interested in if your data is not representative.

## Step 3: Conduct a Statistical Test

Other statistical tests are available, but they all compare within-group variance (how to spread out the data inside a category) against between-group variance (how different the categories are from one another). If the between-group variation is big enough that there is little or no overlap between groups, your statistical test will display a low p-value to represent this. This suggests that the disparities between these groups are unlikely to have occurred by accident. Alternatively, if there is a large within-group variance and a low between-group variance, your statistical test will show a high p-value. Any difference you find across groups is most likely attributable to chance. The variety of variables and the level of measurement of your obtained data will influence your statistical test selection.

## Step 4: Determine Rejection Of Your Null Hypothesis

Your statistical test results must determine whether your null hypothesis should be rejected or not. In most circumstances, you will base your judgment on the p-value provided by the statistical test. In most circumstances, your preset level of significance for rejecting the null hypothesis will be 0.05 - that is, when there is less than a 5% likelihood that these data would be seen if the null hypothesis were true. In other circumstances, researchers use a lower level of significance, such as 0.01 (1%). This reduces the possibility of wrongly rejecting the null hypothesis.

## Step 5: Present Your Results

The findings of hypothesis testing will be discussed in the results and discussion portions of your research paper, dissertation, or thesis. You should include a concise overview of the data and a summary of the findings of your statistical test in the results section. You can talk about whether your results confirmed your initial hypothesis or not in the conversation. Rejecting or failing to reject the null hypothesis is a formal term used in hypothesis testing. This is likely a must for your statistics assignments.

## Types of Hypothesis Testing

To determine whether a discovery or relationship is statistically significant, hypothesis testing uses a z-test. It usually checks to see if two means are the same (the null hypothesis). Only when the population standard deviation is known and the sample size is 30 data points or more, can a z-test be applied.

A statistical test called a t-test is employed to compare the means of two groups. To determine whether two groups differ or if a procedure or treatment affects the population of interest, it is frequently used in hypothesis testing.

## Chi-Square

You utilize a Chi-square test for hypothesis testing concerning whether your data is as predicted. To determine if the expected and observed results are well-fitted, the Chi-square test analyzes the differences between categorical variables from a random sample. The test's fundamental premise is that the observed values in your data should be compared to the predicted values that would be present if the null hypothesis were true.

## Hypothesis Testing and Confidence Intervals

Both confidence intervals and hypothesis tests are inferential techniques that depend on approximating the sample distribution. Data from a sample is used to estimate a population parameter using confidence intervals. Data from a sample is used in hypothesis testing to examine a given hypothesis. We must have a postulated parameter to conduct hypothesis testing.

Bootstrap distributions and randomization distributions are created using comparable simulation techniques. The observed sample statistic is the focal point of a bootstrap distribution, whereas the null hypothesis value is the focal point of a randomization distribution.

A variety of feasible population parameter estimates are included in confidence ranges. In this lesson, we created just two-tailed confidence intervals. There is a direct connection between these two-tail confidence intervals and these two-tail hypothesis tests. The results of a two-tailed hypothesis test and two-tailed confidence intervals typically provide the same results. In other words, a hypothesis test at the 0.05 level will virtually always fail to reject the null hypothesis if the 95% confidence interval contains the predicted value. A hypothesis test at the 0.05 level will nearly certainly reject the null hypothesis if the 95% confidence interval does not include the hypothesized parameter.

## Simple and Composite Hypothesis Testing

Depending on the population distribution, you can classify the statistical hypothesis into two types.

Simple Hypothesis: A simple hypothesis specifies an exact value for the parameter.

Composite Hypothesis: A composite hypothesis specifies a range of values.

A company is claiming that their average sales for this quarter are 1000 units. This is an example of a simple hypothesis.

Suppose the company claims that the sales are in the range of 900 to 1000 units. Then this is a case of a composite hypothesis.

## One-Tailed and Two-Tailed Hypothesis Testing

The One-Tailed test, also called a directional test, considers a critical region of data that would result in the null hypothesis being rejected if the test sample falls into it, inevitably meaning the acceptance of the alternate hypothesis.

In a one-tailed test, the critical distribution area is one-sided, meaning the test sample is either greater or lesser than a specific value.

In two tails, the test sample is checked to be greater or less than a range of values in a Two-Tailed test, implying that the critical distribution area is two-sided.

If the sample falls within this range, the alternate hypothesis will be accepted, and the null hypothesis will be rejected.

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## Right Tailed Hypothesis Testing

If the larger than (>) sign appears in your hypothesis statement, you are using a right-tailed test, also known as an upper test. Or, to put it another way, the disparity is to the right. For instance, you can contrast the battery life before and after a change in production. Your hypothesis statements can be the following if you want to know if the battery life is longer than the original (let's say 90 hours):

- The null hypothesis is (H0 <= 90) or less change.
- A possibility is that battery life has risen (H1) > 90.

The crucial point in this situation is that the alternate hypothesis (H1), not the null hypothesis, decides whether you get a right-tailed test.

## Left Tailed Hypothesis Testing

Alternative hypotheses that assert the true value of a parameter is lower than the null hypothesis are tested with a left-tailed test; they are indicated by the asterisk "<".

Suppose H0: mean = 50 and H1: mean not equal to 50

According to the H1, the mean can be greater than or less than 50. This is an example of a Two-tailed test.

In a similar manner, if H0: mean >=50, then H1: mean <50

Here the mean is less than 50. It is called a One-tailed test.

## Type 1 and Type 2 Error

A hypothesis test can result in two types of errors.

Type 1 Error: A Type-I error occurs when sample results reject the null hypothesis despite being true.

Type 2 Error: A Type-II error occurs when the null hypothesis is not rejected when it is false, unlike a Type-I error.

Suppose a teacher evaluates the examination paper to decide whether a student passes or fails.

H0: Student has passed

H1: Student has failed

Type I error will be the teacher failing the student [rejects H0] although the student scored the passing marks [H0 was true].

Type II error will be the case where the teacher passes the student [do not reject H0] although the student did not score the passing marks [H1 is true].

## Level of Significance

The alpha value is a criterion for determining whether a test statistic is statistically significant. In a statistical test, Alpha represents an acceptable probability of a Type I error. Because alpha is a probability, it can be anywhere between 0 and 1. In practice, the most commonly used alpha values are 0.01, 0.05, and 0.1, which represent a 1%, 5%, and 10% chance of a Type I error, respectively (i.e. rejecting the null hypothesis when it is in fact correct).

## Future-Proof Your AI/ML Career: Top Dos and Don'ts

A p-value is a metric that expresses the likelihood that an observed difference could have occurred by chance. As the p-value decreases the statistical significance of the observed difference increases. If the p-value is too low, you reject the null hypothesis.

Here you have taken an example in which you are trying to test whether the new advertising campaign has increased the product's sales. The p-value is the likelihood that the null hypothesis, which states that there is no change in the sales due to the new advertising campaign, is true. If the p-value is .30, then there is a 30% chance that there is no increase or decrease in the product's sales. If the p-value is 0.03, then there is a 3% probability that there is no increase or decrease in the sales value due to the new advertising campaign. As you can see, the lower the p-value, the chances of the alternate hypothesis being true increases, which means that the new advertising campaign causes an increase or decrease in sales.

## Why is Hypothesis Testing Important in Research Methodology?

Hypothesis testing is crucial in research methodology for several reasons:

- Provides evidence-based conclusions: It allows researchers to make objective conclusions based on empirical data, providing evidence to support or refute their research hypotheses.
- Supports decision-making: It helps make informed decisions, such as accepting or rejecting a new treatment, implementing policy changes, or adopting new practices.
- Adds rigor and validity: It adds scientific rigor to research using statistical methods to analyze data, ensuring that conclusions are based on sound statistical evidence.
- Contributes to the advancement of knowledge: By testing hypotheses, researchers contribute to the growth of knowledge in their respective fields by confirming existing theories or discovering new patterns and relationships.

## Limitations of Hypothesis Testing

Hypothesis testing has some limitations that researchers should be aware of:

- It cannot prove or establish the truth: Hypothesis testing provides evidence to support or reject a hypothesis, but it cannot confirm the absolute truth of the research question.
- Results are sample-specific: Hypothesis testing is based on analyzing a sample from a population, and the conclusions drawn are specific to that particular sample.
- Possible errors: During hypothesis testing, there is a chance of committing type I error (rejecting a true null hypothesis) or type II error (failing to reject a false null hypothesis).
- Assumptions and requirements: Different tests have specific assumptions and requirements that must be met to accurately interpret results.

After reading this tutorial, you would have a much better understanding of hypothesis testing, one of the most important concepts in the field of Data Science . The majority of hypotheses are based on speculation about observed behavior, natural phenomena, or established theories.

If you are interested in statistics of data science and skills needed for such a career, you ought to explore Simplilearn’s Post Graduate Program in Data Science.

If you have any questions regarding this ‘Hypothesis Testing In Statistics’ tutorial, do share them in the comment section. Our subject matter expert will respond to your queries. Happy learning!

## 1. What is hypothesis testing in statistics with example?

Hypothesis testing is a statistical method used to determine if there is enough evidence in a sample data to draw conclusions about a population. It involves formulating two competing hypotheses, the null hypothesis (H0) and the alternative hypothesis (Ha), and then collecting data to assess the evidence. An example: testing if a new drug improves patient recovery (Ha) compared to the standard treatment (H0) based on collected patient data.

## 2. What is hypothesis testing and its types?

Hypothesis testing is a statistical method used to make inferences about a population based on sample data. It involves formulating two hypotheses: the null hypothesis (H0), which represents the default assumption, and the alternative hypothesis (Ha), which contradicts H0. The goal is to assess the evidence and determine whether there is enough statistical significance to reject the null hypothesis in favor of the alternative hypothesis.

Types of hypothesis testing:

- One-sample test: Used to compare a sample to a known value or a hypothesized value.
- Two-sample test: Compares two independent samples to assess if there is a significant difference between their means or distributions.
- Paired-sample test: Compares two related samples, such as pre-test and post-test data, to evaluate changes within the same subjects over time or under different conditions.
- Chi-square test: Used to analyze categorical data and determine if there is a significant association between variables.
- ANOVA (Analysis of Variance): Compares means across multiple groups to check if there is a significant difference between them.

## 3. What are the steps of hypothesis testing?

The steps of hypothesis testing are as follows:

- Formulate the hypotheses: State the null hypothesis (H0) and the alternative hypothesis (Ha) based on the research question.
- Set the significance level: Determine the acceptable level of error (alpha) for making a decision.
- Collect and analyze data: Gather and process the sample data.
- Compute test statistic: Calculate the appropriate statistical test to assess the evidence.
- Make a decision: Compare the test statistic with critical values or p-values and determine whether to reject H0 in favor of Ha or not.
- Draw conclusions: Interpret the results and communicate the findings in the context of the research question.

## 4. What are the 2 types of hypothesis testing?

- One-tailed (or one-sided) test: Tests for the significance of an effect in only one direction, either positive or negative.
- Two-tailed (or two-sided) test: Tests for the significance of an effect in both directions, allowing for the possibility of a positive or negative effect.

The choice between one-tailed and two-tailed tests depends on the specific research question and the directionality of the expected effect.

## 5. What are the 3 major types of hypothesis?

The three major types of hypotheses are:

- Null Hypothesis (H0): Represents the default assumption, stating that there is no significant effect or relationship in the data.
- Alternative Hypothesis (Ha): Contradicts the null hypothesis and proposes a specific effect or relationship that researchers want to investigate.
- Nondirectional Hypothesis: An alternative hypothesis that doesn't specify the direction of the effect, leaving it open for both positive and negative possibilities.

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About the author.

Avijeet is a Senior Research Analyst at Simplilearn. Passionate about Data Analytics, Machine Learning, and Deep Learning, Avijeet is also interested in politics, cricket, and football.

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- Hypothesis Testing: Definition, Uses, Limitations + Examples

Hypothesis testing is as old as the scientific method and is at the heart of the research process.

Research exists to validate or disprove assumptions about various phenomena. The process of validation involves testing and it is in this context that we will explore hypothesis testing.

## What is a Hypothesis?

A hypothesis is a calculated prediction or assumption about a population parameter based on limited evidence. The whole idea behind hypothesis formulation is testing—this means the researcher subjects his or her calculated assumption to a series of evaluations to know whether they are true or false.

Typically, every research starts with a hypothesis—the investigator makes a claim and experiments to prove that this claim is true or false . For instance, if you predict that students who drink milk before class perform better than those who don’t, then this becomes a hypothesis that can be confirmed or refuted using an experiment.

Read: What is Empirical Research Study? [Examples & Method]

## What are the Types of Hypotheses?

1. simple hypothesis.

Also known as a basic hypothesis, a simple hypothesis suggests that an independent variable is responsible for a corresponding dependent variable. In other words, an occurrence of the independent variable inevitably leads to an occurrence of the dependent variable.

Typically, simple hypotheses are considered as generally true, and they establish a causal relationship between two variables.

Examples of Simple Hypothesis

- Drinking soda and other sugary drinks can cause obesity.
- Smoking cigarettes daily leads to lung cancer.

## 2. Complex Hypothesis

A complex hypothesis is also known as a modal. It accounts for the causal relationship between two independent variables and the resulting dependent variables. This means that the combination of the independent variables leads to the occurrence of the dependent variables .

Examples of Complex Hypotheses

- Adults who do not smoke and drink are less likely to develop liver-related conditions.
- Global warming causes icebergs to melt which in turn causes major changes in weather patterns.

## 3. Null Hypothesis

As the name suggests, a null hypothesis is formed when a researcher suspects that there’s no relationship between the variables in an observation. In this case, the purpose of the research is to approve or disapprove this assumption.

Examples of Null Hypothesis

- This is no significant change in a student’s performance if they drink coffee or tea before classes.
- There’s no significant change in the growth of a plant if one uses distilled water only or vitamin-rich water.

Read: Research Report: Definition, Types + [Writing Guide]

## 4. Alternative Hypothesis

To disapprove a null hypothesis, the researcher has to come up with an opposite assumption—this assumption is known as the alternative hypothesis. This means if the null hypothesis says that A is false, the alternative hypothesis assumes that A is true.

An alternative hypothesis can be directional or non-directional depending on the direction of the difference. A directional alternative hypothesis specifies the direction of the tested relationship, stating that one variable is predicted to be larger or smaller than the null value while a non-directional hypothesis only validates the existence of a difference without stating its direction.

Examples of Alternative Hypotheses

- Starting your day with a cup of tea instead of a cup of coffee can make you more alert in the morning.
- The growth of a plant improves significantly when it receives distilled water instead of vitamin-rich water.

## 5. Logical Hypothesis

Logical hypotheses are some of the most common types of calculated assumptions in systematic investigations. It is an attempt to use your reasoning to connect different pieces in research and build a theory using little evidence. In this case, the researcher uses any data available to him, to form a plausible assumption that can be tested.

Examples of Logical Hypothesis

- Waking up early helps you to have a more productive day.
- Beings from Mars would not be able to breathe the air in the atmosphere of the Earth.

## 6. Empirical Hypothesis

After forming a logical hypothesis, the next step is to create an empirical or working hypothesis. At this stage, your logical hypothesis undergoes systematic testing to prove or disprove the assumption. An empirical hypothesis is subject to several variables that can trigger changes and lead to specific outcomes.

Examples of Empirical Testing

- People who eat more fish run faster than people who eat meat.
- Women taking vitamin E grow hair faster than those taking vitamin K.

## 7. Statistical Hypothesis

When forming a statistical hypothesis, the researcher examines the portion of a population of interest and makes a calculated assumption based on the data from this sample. A statistical hypothesis is most common with systematic investigations involving a large target audience. Here, it’s impossible to collect responses from every member of the population so you have to depend on data from your sample and extrapolate the results to the wider population.

Examples of Statistical Hypothesis

- 45% of students in Louisiana have middle-income parents.
- 80% of the UK’s population gets a divorce because of irreconcilable differences.

## What is Hypothesis Testing?

Hypothesis testing is an assessment method that allows researchers to determine the plausibility of a hypothesis. It involves testing an assumption about a specific population parameter to know whether it’s true or false. These population parameters include variance, standard deviation, and median.

Typically, hypothesis testing starts with developing a null hypothesis and then performing several tests that support or reject the null hypothesis. The researcher uses test statistics to compare the association or relationship between two or more variables.

Explore: Research Bias: Definition, Types + Examples

Researchers also use hypothesis testing to calculate the coefficient of variation and determine if the regression relationship and the correlation coefficient are statistically significant.

## How Hypothesis Testing Works

The basis of hypothesis testing is to examine and analyze the null hypothesis and alternative hypothesis to know which one is the most plausible assumption. Since both assumptions are mutually exclusive, only one can be true. In other words, the occurrence of a null hypothesis destroys the chances of the alternative coming to life, and vice-versa.

Interesting: 21 Chrome Extensions for Academic Researchers in 2021

## What Are The Stages of Hypothesis Testing?

To successfully confirm or refute an assumption, the researcher goes through five (5) stages of hypothesis testing;

- Determine the null hypothesis
- Specify the alternative hypothesis
- Set the significance level
- Calculate the test statistics and corresponding P-value
- Draw your conclusion
- Determine the Null Hypothesis

Like we mentioned earlier, hypothesis testing starts with creating a null hypothesis which stands as an assumption that a certain statement is false or implausible. For example, the null hypothesis (H0) could suggest that different subgroups in the research population react to a variable in the same way.

- Specify the Alternative Hypothesis

Once you know the variables for the null hypothesis, the next step is to determine the alternative hypothesis. The alternative hypothesis counters the null assumption by suggesting the statement or assertion is true. Depending on the purpose of your research, the alternative hypothesis can be one-sided or two-sided.

Using the example we established earlier, the alternative hypothesis may argue that the different sub-groups react differently to the same variable based on several internal and external factors.

- Set the Significance Level

Many researchers create a 5% allowance for accepting the value of an alternative hypothesis, even if the value is untrue. This means that there is a 0.05 chance that one would go with the value of the alternative hypothesis, despite the truth of the null hypothesis.

Something to note here is that the smaller the significance level, the greater the burden of proof needed to reject the null hypothesis and support the alternative hypothesis.

Explore: What is Data Interpretation? + [Types, Method & Tools]

- Calculate the Test Statistics and Corresponding P-Value

Test statistics in hypothesis testing allow you to compare different groups between variables while the p-value accounts for the probability of obtaining sample statistics if your null hypothesis is true. In this case, your test statistics can be the mean, median and similar parameters.

If your p-value is 0.65, for example, then it means that the variable in your hypothesis will happen 65 in100 times by pure chance. Use this formula to determine the p-value for your data:

- Draw Your Conclusions

After conducting a series of tests, you should be able to agree or refute the hypothesis based on feedback and insights from your sample data.

## Applications of Hypothesis Testing in Research

Hypothesis testing isn’t only confined to numbers and calculations; it also has several real-life applications in business, manufacturing, advertising, and medicine.

In a factory or other manufacturing plants, hypothesis testing is an important part of quality and production control before the final products are approved and sent out to the consumer.

During ideation and strategy development, C-level executives use hypothesis testing to evaluate their theories and assumptions before any form of implementation. For example, they could leverage hypothesis testing to determine whether or not some new advertising campaign, marketing technique, etc. causes increased sales.

In addition, hypothesis testing is used during clinical trials to prove the efficacy of a drug or new medical method before its approval for widespread human usage.

## What is an Example of Hypothesis Testing?

An employer claims that her workers are of above-average intelligence. She takes a random sample of 20 of them and gets the following results:

Mean IQ Scores: 110

Standard Deviation: 15

Mean Population IQ: 100

Step 1: Using the value of the mean population IQ, we establish the null hypothesis as 100.

Step 2: State that the alternative hypothesis is greater than 100.

Step 3: State the alpha level as 0.05 or 5%

Step 4: Find the rejection region area (given by your alpha level above) from the z-table. An area of .05 is equal to a z-score of 1.645.

Step 5: Calculate the test statistics using this formula

Z = (110–100) ÷ (15÷√20)

10 ÷ 3.35 = 2.99

If the value of the test statistics is higher than the value of the rejection region, then you should reject the null hypothesis. If it is less, then you cannot reject the null.

In this case, 2.99 > 1.645 so we reject the null.

## Importance/Benefits of Hypothesis Testing

The most significant benefit of hypothesis testing is it allows you to evaluate the strength of your claim or assumption before implementing it in your data set. Also, hypothesis testing is the only valid method to prove that something “is or is not”. Other benefits include:

- Hypothesis testing provides a reliable framework for making any data decisions for your population of interest.
- It helps the researcher to successfully extrapolate data from the sample to the larger population.
- Hypothesis testing allows the researcher to determine whether the data from the sample is statistically significant.
- Hypothesis testing is one of the most important processes for measuring the validity and reliability of outcomes in any systematic investigation.
- It helps to provide links to the underlying theory and specific research questions.

## Criticism and Limitations of Hypothesis Testing

Several limitations of hypothesis testing can affect the quality of data you get from this process. Some of these limitations include:

- The interpretation of a p-value for observation depends on the stopping rule and definition of multiple comparisons. This makes it difficult to calculate since the stopping rule is subject to numerous interpretations, plus “multiple comparisons” are unavoidably ambiguous.
- Conceptual issues often arise in hypothesis testing, especially if the researcher merges Fisher and Neyman-Pearson’s methods which are conceptually distinct.
- In an attempt to focus on the statistical significance of the data, the researcher might ignore the estimation and confirmation by repeated experiments.
- Hypothesis testing can trigger publication bias, especially when it requires statistical significance as a criterion for publication.
- When used to detect whether a difference exists between groups, hypothesis testing can trigger absurd assumptions that affect the reliability of your observation.

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## A Beginner’s Guide to Hypothesis Testing in Business

- 30 Mar 2021

Becoming a more data-driven decision-maker can bring several benefits to your organization, enabling you to identify new opportunities to pursue and threats to abate. Rather than allowing subjective thinking to guide your business strategy, backing your decisions with data can empower your company to become more innovative and, ultimately, profitable.

If you’re new to data-driven decision-making, you might be wondering how data translates into business strategy. The answer lies in generating a hypothesis and verifying or rejecting it based on what various forms of data tell you.

Below is a look at hypothesis testing and the role it plays in helping businesses become more data-driven.

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## What Is Hypothesis Testing?

To understand what hypothesis testing is, it’s important first to understand what a hypothesis is.

A hypothesis or hypothesis statement seeks to explain why something has happened, or what might happen, under certain conditions. It can also be used to understand how different variables relate to each other. Hypotheses are often written as if-then statements; for example, “If this happens, then this will happen.”

Hypothesis testing , then, is a statistical means of testing an assumption stated in a hypothesis. While the specific methodology leveraged depends on the nature of the hypothesis and data available, hypothesis testing typically uses sample data to extrapolate insights about a larger population.

## Hypothesis Testing in Business

When it comes to data-driven decision-making, there’s a certain amount of risk that can mislead a professional. This could be due to flawed thinking or observations, incomplete or inaccurate data , or the presence of unknown variables. The danger in this is that, if major strategic decisions are made based on flawed insights, it can lead to wasted resources, missed opportunities, and catastrophic outcomes.

The real value of hypothesis testing in business is that it allows professionals to test their theories and assumptions before putting them into action. This essentially allows an organization to verify its analysis is correct before committing resources to implement a broader strategy.

As one example, consider a company that wishes to launch a new marketing campaign to revitalize sales during a slow period. Doing so could be an incredibly expensive endeavor, depending on the campaign’s size and complexity. The company, therefore, may wish to test the campaign on a smaller scale to understand how it will perform.

In this example, the hypothesis that’s being tested would fall along the lines of: “If the company launches a new marketing campaign, then it will translate into an increase in sales.” It may even be possible to quantify how much of a lift in sales the company expects to see from the effort. Pending the results of the pilot campaign, the business would then know whether it makes sense to roll it out more broadly.

Related: 9 Fundamental Data Science Skills for Business Professionals

## Key Considerations for Hypothesis Testing

1. alternative hypothesis and null hypothesis.

In hypothesis testing, the hypothesis that’s being tested is known as the alternative hypothesis . Often, it’s expressed as a correlation or statistical relationship between variables. The null hypothesis , on the other hand, is a statement that’s meant to show there’s no statistical relationship between the variables being tested. It’s typically the exact opposite of whatever is stated in the alternative hypothesis.

For example, consider a company’s leadership team that historically and reliably sees $12 million in monthly revenue. They want to understand if reducing the price of their services will attract more customers and, in turn, increase revenue.

In this case, the alternative hypothesis may take the form of a statement such as: “If we reduce the price of our flagship service by five percent, then we’ll see an increase in sales and realize revenues greater than $12 million in the next month.”

The null hypothesis, on the other hand, would indicate that revenues wouldn’t increase from the base of $12 million, or might even decrease.

Check out the video below about the difference between an alternative and a null hypothesis, and subscribe to our YouTube channel for more explainer content.

## 2. Significance Level and P-Value

Statistically speaking, if you were to run the same scenario 100 times, you’d likely receive somewhat different results each time. If you were to plot these results in a distribution plot, you’d see the most likely outcome is at the tallest point in the graph, with less likely outcomes falling to the right and left of that point.

With this in mind, imagine you’ve completed your hypothesis test and have your results, which indicate there may be a correlation between the variables you were testing. To understand your results' significance, you’ll need to identify a p-value for the test, which helps note how confident you are in the test results.

In statistics, the p-value depicts the probability that, assuming the null hypothesis is correct, you might still observe results that are at least as extreme as the results of your hypothesis test. The smaller the p-value, the more likely the alternative hypothesis is correct, and the greater the significance of your results.

## 3. One-Sided vs. Two-Sided Testing

When it’s time to test your hypothesis, it’s important to leverage the correct testing method. The two most common hypothesis testing methods are one-sided and two-sided tests , or one-tailed and two-tailed tests, respectively.

Typically, you’d leverage a one-sided test when you have a strong conviction about the direction of change you expect to see due to your hypothesis test. You’d leverage a two-sided test when you’re less confident in the direction of change.

## 4. Sampling

To perform hypothesis testing in the first place, you need to collect a sample of data to be analyzed. Depending on the question you’re seeking to answer or investigate, you might collect samples through surveys, observational studies, or experiments.

A survey involves asking a series of questions to a random population sample and recording self-reported responses.

Observational studies involve a researcher observing a sample population and collecting data as it occurs naturally, without intervention.

Finally, an experiment involves dividing a sample into multiple groups, one of which acts as the control group. For each non-control group, the variable being studied is manipulated to determine how the data collected differs from that of the control group.

## Learn How to Perform Hypothesis Testing

Hypothesis testing is a complex process involving different moving pieces that can allow an organization to effectively leverage its data and inform strategic decisions.

If you’re interested in better understanding hypothesis testing and the role it can play within your organization, one option is to complete a course that focuses on the process. Doing so can lay the statistical and analytical foundation you need to succeed.

Do you want to learn more about hypothesis testing? Explore Business Analytics —one of our online business essentials courses —and download our Beginner’s Guide to Data & Analytics .

## About the Author

## Statistics Tutorial

Descriptive statistics, inferential statistics, stat reference, statistics - hypothesis testing.

Hypothesis testing is a formal way of checking if a hypothesis about a population is true or not.

## Hypothesis Testing

A hypothesis is a claim about a population parameter .

A hypothesis test is a formal procedure to check if a hypothesis is true or not.

Examples of claims that can be checked:

The average height of people in Denmark is more than 170 cm.

The share of left handed people in Australia is not 10%.

The average income of dentists is less the average income of lawyers.

## The Null and Alternative Hypothesis

Hypothesis testing is based on making two different claims about a population parameter.

The null hypothesis (\(H_{0} \)) and the alternative hypothesis (\(H_{1}\)) are the claims.

The two claims needs to be mutually exclusive , meaning only one of them can be true.

The alternative hypothesis is typically what we are trying to prove.

For example, we want to check the following claim:

"The average height of people in Denmark is more than 170 cm."

In this case, the parameter is the average height of people in Denmark (\(\mu\)).

The null and alternative hypothesis would be:

Null hypothesis : The average height of people in Denmark is 170 cm.

Alternative hypothesis : The average height of people in Denmark is more than 170 cm.

The claims are often expressed with symbols like this:

\(H_{0}\): \(\mu = 170 \: cm \)

\(H_{1}\): \(\mu > 170 \: cm \)

If the data supports the alternative hypothesis, we reject the null hypothesis and accept the alternative hypothesis.

If the data does not support the alternative hypothesis, we keep the null hypothesis.

Note: The alternative hypothesis is also referred to as (\(H_{A} \)).

## The Significance Level

The significance level (\(\alpha\)) is the uncertainty we accept when rejecting the null hypothesis in the hypothesis test.

The significance level is a percentage probability of accidentally making the wrong conclusion.

Typical significance levels are:

- \(\alpha = 0.1\) (10%)
- \(\alpha = 0.05\) (5%)
- \(\alpha = 0.01\) (1%)

A lower significance level means that the evidence in the data needs to be stronger to reject the null hypothesis.

There is no "correct" significance level - it only states the uncertainty of the conclusion.

Note: A 5% significance level means that when we reject a null hypothesis:

We expect to reject a true null hypothesis 5 out of 100 times.

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## The Test Statistic

The test statistic is used to decide the outcome of the hypothesis test.

The test statistic is a standardized value calculated from the sample.

Standardization means converting a statistic to a well known probability distribution .

The type of probability distribution depends on the type of test.

Common examples are:

- Standard Normal Distribution (Z): used for Testing Population Proportions
- Student's T-Distribution (T): used for Testing Population Means

Note: You will learn how to calculate the test statistic for each type of test in the following chapters.

## The Critical Value and P-Value Approach

There are two main approaches used for hypothesis tests:

- The critical value approach compares the test statistic with the critical value of the significance level.
- The p-value approach compares the p-value of the test statistic and with the significance level.

## The Critical Value Approach

The critical value approach checks if the test statistic is in the rejection region .

The rejection region is an area of probability in the tails of the distribution.

The size of the rejection region is decided by the significance level (\(\alpha\)).

The value that separates the rejection region from the rest is called the critical value .

Here is a graphical illustration:

If the test statistic is inside this rejection region, the null hypothesis is rejected .

For example, if the test statistic is 2.3 and the critical value is 2 for a significance level (\(\alpha = 0.05\)):

We reject the null hypothesis (\(H_{0} \)) at 0.05 significance level (\(\alpha\))

## The P-Value Approach

The p-value approach checks if the p-value of the test statistic is smaller than the significance level (\(\alpha\)).

The p-value of the test statistic is the area of probability in the tails of the distribution from the value of the test statistic.

If the p-value is smaller than the significance level, the null hypothesis is rejected .

The p-value directly tells us the lowest significance level where we can reject the null hypothesis.

For example, if the p-value is 0.03:

We reject the null hypothesis (\(H_{0} \)) at a 0.05 significance level (\(\alpha\))

We keep the null hypothesis (\(H_{0}\)) at a 0.01 significance level (\(\alpha\))

Note: The two approaches are only different in how they present the conclusion.

## Steps for a Hypothesis Test

The following steps are used for a hypothesis test:

- Check the conditions
- Define the claims
- Decide the significance level
- Calculate the test statistic

One condition is that the sample is randomly selected from the population.

The other conditions depends on what type of parameter you are testing the hypothesis for.

Common parameters to test hypotheses are:

- Proportions (for qualitative data)
- Mean values (for numerical data)

You will learn the steps for both types in the following pages.

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## Unit 12: Significance tests (hypothesis testing)

About this unit, the idea of significance tests.

- Simple hypothesis testing (Opens a modal)
- Idea behind hypothesis testing (Opens a modal)
- Examples of null and alternative hypotheses (Opens a modal)
- P-values and significance tests (Opens a modal)
- Comparing P-values to different significance levels (Opens a modal)
- Estimating a P-value from a simulation (Opens a modal)
- Using P-values to make conclusions (Opens a modal)
- Simple hypothesis testing Get 3 of 4 questions to level up!
- Writing null and alternative hypotheses Get 3 of 4 questions to level up!
- Estimating P-values from simulations Get 3 of 4 questions to level up!

## Error probabilities and power

- Introduction to Type I and Type II errors (Opens a modal)
- Type 1 errors (Opens a modal)
- Examples identifying Type I and Type II errors (Opens a modal)
- Introduction to power in significance tests (Opens a modal)
- Examples thinking about power in significance tests (Opens a modal)
- Consequences of errors and significance (Opens a modal)
- Type I vs Type II error Get 3 of 4 questions to level up!
- Error probabilities and power Get 3 of 4 questions to level up!

## Tests about a population proportion

- Constructing hypotheses for a significance test about a proportion (Opens a modal)
- Conditions for a z test about a proportion (Opens a modal)
- Reference: Conditions for inference on a proportion (Opens a modal)
- Calculating a z statistic in a test about a proportion (Opens a modal)
- Calculating a P-value given a z statistic (Opens a modal)
- Making conclusions in a test about a proportion (Opens a modal)
- Writing hypotheses for a test about a proportion Get 3 of 4 questions to level up!
- Conditions for a z test about a proportion Get 3 of 4 questions to level up!
- Calculating the test statistic in a z test for a proportion Get 3 of 4 questions to level up!
- Calculating the P-value in a z test for a proportion Get 3 of 4 questions to level up!
- Making conclusions in a z test for a proportion Get 3 of 4 questions to level up!

## Tests about a population mean

- Writing hypotheses for a significance test about a mean (Opens a modal)
- Conditions for a t test about a mean (Opens a modal)
- Reference: Conditions for inference on a mean (Opens a modal)
- When to use z or t statistics in significance tests (Opens a modal)
- Example calculating t statistic for a test about a mean (Opens a modal)
- Using TI calculator for P-value from t statistic (Opens a modal)
- Using a table to estimate P-value from t statistic (Opens a modal)
- Comparing P-value from t statistic to significance level (Opens a modal)
- Free response example: Significance test for a mean (Opens a modal)
- Writing hypotheses for a test about a mean Get 3 of 4 questions to level up!
- Conditions for a t test about a mean Get 3 of 4 questions to level up!
- Calculating the test statistic in a t test for a mean Get 3 of 4 questions to level up!
- Calculating the P-value in a t test for a mean Get 3 of 4 questions to level up!
- Making conclusions in a t test for a mean Get 3 of 4 questions to level up!

## More significance testing videos

- Hypothesis testing and p-values (Opens a modal)
- One-tailed and two-tailed tests (Opens a modal)
- Z-statistics vs. T-statistics (Opens a modal)
- Small sample hypothesis test (Opens a modal)
- Large sample proportion hypothesis testing (Opens a modal)

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- Hypothesis Testing

## What is Hypothesis Testing?

Hypothesis testing in statistics refers to analyzing an assumption about a population parameter. It is used to make an educated guess about an assumption using statistics. With the use of sample data, hypothesis testing makes an assumption about how true the assumption is for the entire population from where the sample is being taken.

Any hypothetical statement we make may or may not be valid, and it is then our responsibility to provide evidence for its possibility. To approach any hypothesis, we follow these four simple steps that test its validity.

First, we formulate two hypothetical statements such that only one of them is true. By doing so, we can check the validity of our own hypothesis.

The next step is to formulate the statistical analysis to be followed based upon the data points.

Then we analyze the given data using our methodology.

The final step is to analyze the result and judge whether the null hypothesis will be rejected or is true.

## Let’s look at several hypothesis testing examples:

It is observed that the average recovery time for a knee-surgery patient is 8 weeks. A physician believes that after successful knee surgery if the patient goes for physical therapy twice a week rather than thrice a week, the recovery period will be longer. Conduct hypothesis for this statement.

David is a ten-year-old who finishes a 25-yard freestyle in the meantime of 16.43 seconds. David’s father bought goggles for his son, believing that it would help him to reduce his time. He then recorded a total of fifteen 25-yard freestyle for David, and the average time came out to be 16 seconds. Conduct a hypothesis.

A tire company claims their A-segment of tires have a running life of 50,000 miles before they need to be replaced, and previous studies show a standard deviation of 8,000 miles. After surveying a total of 28 tires, the mean run time came to be 46,500 miles with a standard deviation of 9800 miles. Is the claim made by the tire company consistent with the given data? Conduct hypothesis testing.

All of the hypothesis testing examples are from real-life situations, which leads us to believe that hypothesis testing is a very practical topic indeed. It is an integral part of a researcher's study and is used in every research methodology in one way or another.

Inferential statistics majorly deals with hypothesis testing. The research hypothesis states there is a relationship between the independent variable and dependent variable. Whereas the null hypothesis rejects this claim of any relationship between the two, our job as researchers or students is to check whether there is any relation between the two.

## Hypothesis Testing in Research Methodology

Now that we are clear about what hypothesis testing is? Let's look at the use of hypothesis testing in research methodology. Hypothesis testing is at the centre of research projects.

## What is Hypothesis Testing and Why is it Important in Research Methodology?

Often after formulating research statements, the validity of those statements need to be verified. Hypothesis testing offers a statistical approach to the researcher about the theoretical assumptions he/she made. It can be understood as quantitative results for a qualitative problem.

(Image will be uploaded soon)

Hypothesis testing provides various techniques to test the hypothesis statement depending upon the variable and the data points. It finds its use in almost every field of research while answering statements such as whether this new medicine will work, a new testing method is appropriate, or if the outcomes of a random experiment are probable or not.

## Procedure of Hypothesis Testing

To find the validity of any statement, we have to strictly follow the stepwise procedure of hypothesis testing. After stating the initial hypothesis, we have to re-write them in the form of a null and alternate hypothesis. The alternate hypothesis predicts a relationship between the variables, whereas the null hypothesis predicts no relationship between the variables.

After writing them as H 0 (null hypothesis) and H a (Alternate hypothesis), only one of the statements can be true. For example, taking the hypothesis that, on average, men are taller than women, we write the statements as:

H 0 : On average, men are not taller than women.

H a : On average, men are taller than women.

Our next aim is to collect sample data, what we call sampling, in a way so that we can test our hypothesis. Your data should come from the concerned population for which you want to make a hypothesis.

What is the p value in hypothesis testing? P-value gives us information about the probability of occurrence of results as extreme as observed results.

You will obtain your p-value after choosing the hypothesis testing method, which will be the guiding factor in rejecting the hypothesis. Usually, the p-value cutoff for rejecting the null hypothesis is 0.05. So anything below that, you will reject the null hypothesis.

A low p-value means that the between-group variance is large enough that there is almost no overlapping, and it is unlikely that these came about by chance. A high p-value suggests there is a high within-group variance and low between-group variance, and any difference in the measure is due to chance only.

## What is statistical hypothesis testing?

When forming conclusions through research, two sorts of errors are common: A hypothesis must be set and defined in statistics during a statistical survey or research. A statistical hypothesis is what it is called. It is, in fact, a population parameter assumption. However, it is unmistakable that this idea is always proven correct. Hypothesis testing refers to the predetermined formal procedures used by statisticians to determine whether hypotheses should be accepted or rejected. The process of selecting hypotheses for a given probability distribution based on observable data is known as hypothesis testing. Hypothesis testing is a fundamental and crucial issue in statistics.

## Why do I Need to Test it? Why not just prove an alternate one?

The quick answer is that you must as a scientist; it is part of the scientific process. Science employs a variety of methods to test or reject theories, ensuring that any new hypothesis is free of errors. One protection to ensure your research is not incorrect is to include both a null and an alternate hypothesis. The scientific community considers not incorporating the null hypothesis in your research to be poor practice. You are almost certainly setting yourself up for failure if you set out to prove another theory without first examining it. At the very least, your experiment will not be considered seriously.

## Types of Hypothesis Testing

There are several types of hypothesis testing, and they are used based on the data provided. Depending on the sample size and the data given, we choose among different hypothesis testing methodologies. Here starts the use of hypothesis testing tools in research methodology.

Normality- This type of testing is used for normal distribution in a population sample. If the data points are grouped around the mean, the probability of them being above or below the mean is equally likely. Its shape resembles a bell curve that is equally distributed on either side of the mean.

T-test- This test is used when the sample size in a normally distributed population is comparatively small, and the standard deviation is unknown. Usually, if the sample size drops below 30, we use a T-test to find the confidence intervals of the population.

Chi-Square Test- The Chi-Square test is used to test the population variance against the known or assumed value of the population variance. It is also a better choice to test the goodness of fit of a distribution of data. The two most common Chi-Square tests are the Chi-Square test of independence and the chi-square test of variance.

ANOVA- Analysis of Variance or ANOVA compares the data sets of two different populations or samples. It is similar in its use to the t-test or the Z-test, but it allows us to compare more than two sample means. ANOVA allows us to test the significance between an independent variable and a dependent variable, namely X and Y, respectively.

Z-test- It is a statistical measure to test that the means of two population samples are different when their variance is known. For a Z-test, the population is assumed to be normally distributed. A z-test is better suited in the case of large sample sizes greater than 30. This is due to the central limit theorem that as the sample size increases, the samples are considered to be distributed normally.

## FAQs on Hypothesis Testing

1. Mention the types of hypothesis Tests.

There are two types of a hypothesis tests:

Null Hypothesis: It is denoted as H₀.

Alternative Hypothesis: IT is denoted as H₁ or Hₐ.

2. What are the two errors that can be found while performing the null Hypothesis test?

While performing the null hypothesis test there is a possibility of occurring two types of errors,

Type-1: The type-1 error is denoted by (α), it is also known as the significance level. It is the rejection of the true null hypothesis. It is the error of commission.

Type-2: The type-2 error is denoted by (β). (1 - β) is known as the power test. The false null hypothesis is not rejected. It is the error of the omission.

3. What is the p-value in hypothesis testing?

During hypothetical testing in statistics, the p-value indicates the probability of obtaining the result as extreme as observed results. A smaller p-value provides evidence to accept the alternate hypothesis. The p-value is used as a rejection point that provides the smallest level of significance at which the null hypothesis is rejected. Often p-value is calculated using the p-value tables by calculating the deviation between the observed value and the chosen reference value.

It may also be calculated mathematically by performing integrals on all the values that fall under the curve and areas far from the reference value as the observed value relative to the total area of the curve. The p-value determines the evidence to reject the null hypothesis in hypothesis testing.

4. What is a null hypothesis?

The null hypothesis in statistics says that there is no certain difference between the population. It serves as a conjecture proposing no difference, whereas the alternate hypothesis says there is a difference. When we perform hypothesis testing, we have to state the null hypothesis and alternative hypotheses such that only one of them is ever true.

By determining the p-value, we calculate whether the null hypothesis is to be rejected or not. If the difference between groups is low, it is merely by chance, and the null hypothesis, which states that there is no difference among groups, is true. Therefore, we have no evidence to reject the null hypothesis.

Hypothesis Testing for Means & Proportions

Lisa Sullivan, PhD

Professor of Biostatistics

Boston University School of Public Health

## Introduction

This is the first of three modules that will addresses the second area of statistical inference, which is hypothesis testing, in which a specific statement or hypothesis is generated about a population parameter, and sample statistics are used to assess the likelihood that the hypothesis is true. The hypothesis is based on available information and the investigator's belief about the population parameters. The process of hypothesis testing involves setting up two competing hypotheses, the null hypothesis and the alternate hypothesis. One selects a random sample (or multiple samples when there are more comparison groups), computes summary statistics and then assesses the likelihood that the sample data support the research or alternative hypothesis. Similar to estimation, the process of hypothesis testing is based on probability theory and the Central Limit Theorem.

This module will focus on hypothesis testing for means and proportions. The next two modules in this series will address analysis of variance and chi-squared tests.

## Learning Objectives

After completing this module, the student will be able to:

- Define null and research hypothesis, test statistic, level of significance and decision rule
- Distinguish between Type I and Type II errors and discuss the implications of each
- Explain the difference between one and two sided tests of hypothesis
- Estimate and interpret p-values
- Explain the relationship between confidence interval estimates and p-values in drawing inferences
- Differentiate hypothesis testing procedures based on type of outcome variable and number of sample

## Introduction to Hypothesis Testing

Techniques for hypothesis testing .

The techniques for hypothesis testing depend on

- the type of outcome variable being analyzed (continuous, dichotomous, discrete)
- the number of comparison groups in the investigation
- whether the comparison groups are independent (i.e., physically separate such as men versus women) or dependent (i.e., matched or paired such as pre- and post-assessments on the same participants).

In estimation we focused explicitly on techniques for one and two samples and discussed estimation for a specific parameter (e.g., the mean or proportion of a population), for differences (e.g., difference in means, the risk difference) and ratios (e.g., the relative risk and odds ratio). Here we will focus on procedures for one and two samples when the outcome is either continuous (and we focus on means) or dichotomous (and we focus on proportions).

## General Approach: A Simple Example

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reported on trends in weight, height and body mass index from the 1960's through 2002. 1 The general trend was that Americans were much heavier and slightly taller in 2002 as compared to 1960; both men and women gained approximately 24 pounds, on average, between 1960 and 2002. In 2002, the mean weight for men was reported at 191 pounds. Suppose that an investigator hypothesizes that weights are even higher in 2006 (i.e., that the trend continued over the subsequent 4 years). The research hypothesis is that the mean weight in men in 2006 is more than 191 pounds. The null hypothesis is that there is no change in weight, and therefore the mean weight is still 191 pounds in 2006.

In order to test the hypotheses, we select a random sample of American males in 2006 and measure their weights. Suppose we have resources available to recruit n=100 men into our sample. We weigh each participant and compute summary statistics on the sample data. Suppose in the sample we determine the following:

Do the sample data support the null or research hypothesis? The sample mean of 197.1 is numerically higher than 191. However, is this difference more than would be expected by chance? In hypothesis testing, we assume that the null hypothesis holds until proven otherwise. We therefore need to determine the likelihood of observing a sample mean of 197.1 or higher when the true population mean is 191 (i.e., if the null hypothesis is true or under the null hypothesis). We can compute this probability using the Central Limit Theorem. Specifically,

(Notice that we use the sample standard deviation in computing the Z score. This is generally an appropriate substitution as long as the sample size is large, n > 30. Thus, there is less than a 1% probability of observing a sample mean as large as 197.1 when the true population mean is 191. Do you think that the null hypothesis is likely true? Based on how unlikely it is to observe a sample mean of 197.1 under the null hypothesis (i.e., <1% probability), we might infer, from our data, that the null hypothesis is probably not true.

Suppose that the sample data had turned out differently. Suppose that we instead observed the following in 2006:

How likely it is to observe a sample mean of 192.1 or higher when the true population mean is 191 (i.e., if the null hypothesis is true)? We can again compute this probability using the Central Limit Theorem. Specifically,

There is a 33.4% probability of observing a sample mean as large as 192.1 when the true population mean is 191. Do you think that the null hypothesis is likely true?

Neither of the sample means that we obtained allows us to know with certainty whether the null hypothesis is true or not. However, our computations suggest that, if the null hypothesis were true, the probability of observing a sample mean >197.1 is less than 1%. In contrast, if the null hypothesis were true, the probability of observing a sample mean >192.1 is about 33%. We can't know whether the null hypothesis is true, but the sample that provided a mean value of 197.1 provides much stronger evidence in favor of rejecting the null hypothesis, than the sample that provided a mean value of 192.1. Note that this does not mean that a sample mean of 192.1 indicates that the null hypothesis is true; it just doesn't provide compelling evidence to reject it.

In essence, hypothesis testing is a procedure to compute a probability that reflects the strength of the evidence (based on a given sample) for rejecting the null hypothesis. In hypothesis testing, we determine a threshold or cut-off point (called the critical value) to decide when to believe the null hypothesis and when to believe the research hypothesis. It is important to note that it is possible to observe any sample mean when the true population mean is true (in this example equal to 191), but some sample means are very unlikely. Based on the two samples above it would seem reasonable to believe the research hypothesis when x̄ = 197.1, but to believe the null hypothesis when x̄ =192.1. What we need is a threshold value such that if x̄ is above that threshold then we believe that H 1 is true and if x̄ is below that threshold then we believe that H 0 is true. The difficulty in determining a threshold for x̄ is that it depends on the scale of measurement. In this example, the threshold, sometimes called the critical value, might be 195 (i.e., if the sample mean is 195 or more then we believe that H 1 is true and if the sample mean is less than 195 then we believe that H 0 is true). Suppose we are interested in assessing an increase in blood pressure over time, the critical value will be different because blood pressures are measured in millimeters of mercury (mmHg) as opposed to in pounds. In the following we will explain how the critical value is determined and how we handle the issue of scale.

First, to address the issue of scale in determining the critical value, we convert our sample data (in particular the sample mean) into a Z score. We know from the module on probability that the center of the Z distribution is zero and extreme values are those that exceed 2 or fall below -2. Z scores above 2 and below -2 represent approximately 5% of all Z values. If the observed sample mean is close to the mean specified in H 0 (here m =191), then Z will be close to zero. If the observed sample mean is much larger than the mean specified in H 0 , then Z will be large.

In hypothesis testing, we select a critical value from the Z distribution. This is done by first determining what is called the level of significance, denoted α ("alpha"). What we are doing here is drawing a line at extreme values. The level of significance is the probability that we reject the null hypothesis (in favor of the alternative) when it is actually true and is also called the Type I error rate.

α = Level of significance = P(Type I error) = P(Reject H 0 | H 0 is true).

Because α is a probability, it ranges between 0 and 1. The most commonly used value in the medical literature for α is 0.05, or 5%. Thus, if an investigator selects α=0.05, then they are allowing a 5% probability of incorrectly rejecting the null hypothesis in favor of the alternative when the null is in fact true. Depending on the circumstances, one might choose to use a level of significance of 1% or 10%. For example, if an investigator wanted to reject the null only if there were even stronger evidence than that ensured with α=0.05, they could choose a =0.01as their level of significance. The typical values for α are 0.01, 0.05 and 0.10, with α=0.05 the most commonly used value.

Suppose in our weight study we select α=0.05. We need to determine the value of Z that holds 5% of the values above it (see below).

The critical value of Z for α =0.05 is Z = 1.645 (i.e., 5% of the distribution is above Z=1.645). With this value we can set up what is called our decision rule for the test. The rule is to reject H 0 if the Z score is 1.645 or more.

With the first sample we have

Because 2.38 > 1.645, we reject the null hypothesis. (The same conclusion can be drawn by comparing the 0.0087 probability of observing a sample mean as extreme as 197.1 to the level of significance of 0.05. If the observed probability is smaller than the level of significance we reject H 0 ). Because the Z score exceeds the critical value, we conclude that the mean weight for men in 2006 is more than 191 pounds, the value reported in 2002. If we observed the second sample (i.e., sample mean =192.1), we would not be able to reject the null hypothesis because the Z score is 0.43 which is not in the rejection region (i.e., the region in the tail end of the curve above 1.645). With the second sample we do not have sufficient evidence (because we set our level of significance at 5%) to conclude that weights have increased. Again, the same conclusion can be reached by comparing probabilities. The probability of observing a sample mean as extreme as 192.1 is 33.4% which is not below our 5% level of significance.

## Hypothesis Testing: Upper-, Lower, and Two Tailed Tests

The procedure for hypothesis testing is based on the ideas described above. Specifically, we set up competing hypotheses, select a random sample from the population of interest and compute summary statistics. We then determine whether the sample data supports the null or alternative hypotheses. The procedure can be broken down into the following five steps.

- Step 1. Set up hypotheses and select the level of significance α.

H 0 : Null hypothesis (no change, no difference);

H 1 : Research hypothesis (investigator's belief); α =0.05

- Step 2. Select the appropriate test statistic.

The test statistic is a single number that summarizes the sample information. An example of a test statistic is the Z statistic computed as follows:

When the sample size is small, we will use t statistics (just as we did when constructing confidence intervals for small samples). As we present each scenario, alternative test statistics are provided along with conditions for their appropriate use.

- Step 3. Set up decision rule.

The decision rule is a statement that tells under what circumstances to reject the null hypothesis. The decision rule is based on specific values of the test statistic (e.g., reject H 0 if Z > 1.645). The decision rule for a specific test depends on 3 factors: the research or alternative hypothesis, the test statistic and the level of significance. Each is discussed below.

- The decision rule depends on whether an upper-tailed, lower-tailed, or two-tailed test is proposed. In an upper-tailed test the decision rule has investigators reject H 0 if the test statistic is larger than the critical value. In a lower-tailed test the decision rule has investigators reject H 0 if the test statistic is smaller than the critical value. In a two-tailed test the decision rule has investigators reject H 0 if the test statistic is extreme, either larger than an upper critical value or smaller than a lower critical value.
- The exact form of the test statistic is also important in determining the decision rule. If the test statistic follows the standard normal distribution (Z), then the decision rule will be based on the standard normal distribution. If the test statistic follows the t distribution, then the decision rule will be based on the t distribution. The appropriate critical value will be selected from the t distribution again depending on the specific alternative hypothesis and the level of significance.
- The third factor is the level of significance. The level of significance which is selected in Step 1 (e.g., α =0.05) dictates the critical value. For example, in an upper tailed Z test, if α =0.05 then the critical value is Z=1.645.

The following figures illustrate the rejection regions defined by the decision rule for upper-, lower- and two-tailed Z tests with α=0.05. Notice that the rejection regions are in the upper, lower and both tails of the curves, respectively. The decision rules are written below each figure.

Rejection Region for Lower-Tailed Z Test (H 1 : μ < μ 0 ) with α =0.05

The decision rule is: Reject H 0 if Z < 1.645.

Rejection Region for Two-Tailed Z Test (H 1 : μ ≠ μ 0 ) with α =0.05

The decision rule is: Reject H 0 if Z < -1.960 or if Z > 1.960.

The complete table of critical values of Z for upper, lower and two-tailed tests can be found in the table of Z values to the right in "Other Resources."

Critical values of t for upper, lower and two-tailed tests can be found in the table of t values in "Other Resources."

- Step 4. Compute the test statistic.

Here we compute the test statistic by substituting the observed sample data into the test statistic identified in Step 2.

- Step 5. Conclusion.

The final conclusion is made by comparing the test statistic (which is a summary of the information observed in the sample) to the decision rule. The final conclusion will be either to reject the null hypothesis (because the sample data are very unlikely if the null hypothesis is true) or not to reject the null hypothesis (because the sample data are not very unlikely).

If the null hypothesis is rejected, then an exact significance level is computed to describe the likelihood of observing the sample data assuming that the null hypothesis is true. The exact level of significance is called the p-value and it will be less than the chosen level of significance if we reject H 0 .

Statistical computing packages provide exact p-values as part of their standard output for hypothesis tests. In fact, when using a statistical computing package, the steps outlined about can be abbreviated. The hypotheses (step 1) should always be set up in advance of any analysis and the significance criterion should also be determined (e.g., α =0.05). Statistical computing packages will produce the test statistic (usually reporting the test statistic as t) and a p-value. The investigator can then determine statistical significance using the following: If p < α then reject H 0 .

- Step 1. Set up hypotheses and determine level of significance

H 0 : μ = 191 H 1 : μ > 191 α =0.05

The research hypothesis is that weights have increased, and therefore an upper tailed test is used.

- Step 2. Select the appropriate test statistic.

Because the sample size is large (n > 30) the appropriate test statistic is

- Step 3. Set up decision rule.

In this example, we are performing an upper tailed test (H 1 : μ> 191), with a Z test statistic and selected α =0.05. Reject H 0 if Z > 1.645.

We now substitute the sample data into the formula for the test statistic identified in Step 2.

We reject H 0 because 2.38 > 1.645. We have statistically significant evidence at a =0.05, to show that the mean weight in men in 2006 is more than 191 pounds. Because we rejected the null hypothesis, we now approximate the p-value which is the likelihood of observing the sample data if the null hypothesis is true. An alternative definition of the p-value is the smallest level of significance where we can still reject H 0 . In this example, we observed Z=2.38 and for α=0.05, the critical value was 1.645. Because 2.38 exceeded 1.645 we rejected H 0 . In our conclusion we reported a statistically significant increase in mean weight at a 5% level of significance. Using the table of critical values for upper tailed tests, we can approximate the p-value. If we select α=0.025, the critical value is 1.96, and we still reject H 0 because 2.38 > 1.960. If we select α=0.010 the critical value is 2.326, and we still reject H 0 because 2.38 > 2.326. However, if we select α=0.005, the critical value is 2.576, and we cannot reject H 0 because 2.38 < 2.576. Therefore, the smallest α where we still reject H 0 is 0.010. This is the p-value. A statistical computing package would produce a more precise p-value which would be in between 0.005 and 0.010. Here we are approximating the p-value and would report p < 0.010.

## Type I and Type II Errors

In all tests of hypothesis, there are two types of errors that can be committed. The first is called a Type I error and refers to the situation where we incorrectly reject H 0 when in fact it is true. This is also called a false positive result (as we incorrectly conclude that the research hypothesis is true when in fact it is not). When we run a test of hypothesis and decide to reject H 0 (e.g., because the test statistic exceeds the critical value in an upper tailed test) then either we make a correct decision because the research hypothesis is true or we commit a Type I error. The different conclusions are summarized in the table below. Note that we will never know whether the null hypothesis is really true or false (i.e., we will never know which row of the following table reflects reality).

Table - Conclusions in Test of Hypothesis

In the first step of the hypothesis test, we select a level of significance, α, and α= P(Type I error). Because we purposely select a small value for α, we control the probability of committing a Type I error. For example, if we select α=0.05, and our test tells us to reject H 0 , then there is a 5% probability that we commit a Type I error. Most investigators are very comfortable with this and are confident when rejecting H 0 that the research hypothesis is true (as it is the more likely scenario when we reject H 0 ).

When we run a test of hypothesis and decide not to reject H 0 (e.g., because the test statistic is below the critical value in an upper tailed test) then either we make a correct decision because the null hypothesis is true or we commit a Type II error. Beta (β) represents the probability of a Type II error and is defined as follows: β=P(Type II error) = P(Do not Reject H 0 | H 0 is false). Unfortunately, we cannot choose β to be small (e.g., 0.05) to control the probability of committing a Type II error because β depends on several factors including the sample size, α, and the research hypothesis. When we do not reject H 0 , it may be very likely that we are committing a Type II error (i.e., failing to reject H 0 when in fact it is false). Therefore, when tests are run and the null hypothesis is not rejected we often make a weak concluding statement allowing for the possibility that we might be committing a Type II error. If we do not reject H 0 , we conclude that we do not have significant evidence to show that H 1 is true. We do not conclude that H 0 is true.

The most common reason for a Type II error is a small sample size.

## Tests with One Sample, Continuous Outcome

Hypothesis testing applications with a continuous outcome variable in a single population are performed according to the five-step procedure outlined above. A key component is setting up the null and research hypotheses. The objective is to compare the mean in a single population to known mean (μ 0 ). The known value is generally derived from another study or report, for example a study in a similar, but not identical, population or a study performed some years ago. The latter is called a historical control. It is important in setting up the hypotheses in a one sample test that the mean specified in the null hypothesis is a fair and reasonable comparator. This will be discussed in the examples that follow.

Test Statistics for Testing H 0 : μ= μ 0

- if n > 30
- if n < 30

Note that statistical computing packages will use the t statistic exclusively and make the necessary adjustments for comparing the test statistic to appropriate values from probability tables to produce a p-value.

The National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) published a report in 2005 entitled Health, United States, containing extensive information on major trends in the health of Americans. Data are provided for the US population as a whole and for specific ages, sexes and races. The NCHS report indicated that in 2002 Americans paid an average of $3,302 per year on health care and prescription drugs. An investigator hypothesizes that in 2005 expenditures have decreased primarily due to the availability of generic drugs. To test the hypothesis, a sample of 100 Americans are selected and their expenditures on health care and prescription drugs in 2005 are measured. The sample data are summarized as follows: n=100, x̄

=$3,190 and s=$890. Is there statistical evidence of a reduction in expenditures on health care and prescription drugs in 2005? Is the sample mean of $3,190 evidence of a true reduction in the mean or is it within chance fluctuation? We will run the test using the five-step approach.

- Step 1. Set up hypotheses and determine level of significance

H 0 : μ = 3,302 H 1 : μ < 3,302 α =0.05

The research hypothesis is that expenditures have decreased, and therefore a lower-tailed test is used.

This is a lower tailed test, using a Z statistic and a 5% level of significance. Reject H 0 if Z < -1.645.

- Step 4. Compute the test statistic.

We do not reject H 0 because -1.26 > -1.645. We do not have statistically significant evidence at α=0.05 to show that the mean expenditures on health care and prescription drugs are lower in 2005 than the mean of $3,302 reported in 2002.

Recall that when we fail to reject H 0 in a test of hypothesis that either the null hypothesis is true (here the mean expenditures in 2005 are the same as those in 2002 and equal to $3,302) or we committed a Type II error (i.e., we failed to reject H 0 when in fact it is false). In summarizing this test, we conclude that we do not have sufficient evidence to reject H 0 . We do not conclude that H 0 is true, because there may be a moderate to high probability that we committed a Type II error. It is possible that the sample size is not large enough to detect a difference in mean expenditures.

The NCHS reported that the mean total cholesterol level in 2002 for all adults was 203. Total cholesterol levels in participants who attended the seventh examination of the Offspring in the Framingham Heart Study are summarized as follows: n=3,310, x̄ =200.3, and s=36.8. Is there statistical evidence of a difference in mean cholesterol levels in the Framingham Offspring?

Here we want to assess whether the sample mean of 200.3 in the Framingham sample is statistically significantly different from 203 (i.e., beyond what we would expect by chance). We will run the test using the five-step approach.

H 0 : μ= 203 H 1 : μ≠ 203 α=0.05

The research hypothesis is that cholesterol levels are different in the Framingham Offspring, and therefore a two-tailed test is used.

- Step 3. Set up decision rule.

This is a two-tailed test, using a Z statistic and a 5% level of significance. Reject H 0 if Z < -1.960 or is Z > 1.960.

We reject H 0 because -4.22 ≤ -1. .960. We have statistically significant evidence at α=0.05 to show that the mean total cholesterol level in the Framingham Offspring is different from the national average of 203 reported in 2002. Because we reject H 0 , we also approximate a p-value. Using the two-sided significance levels, p < 0.0001.

## Statistical Significance versus Clinical (Practical) Significance

This example raises an important concept of statistical versus clinical or practical significance. From a statistical standpoint, the total cholesterol levels in the Framingham sample are highly statistically significantly different from the national average with p < 0.0001 (i.e., there is less than a 0.01% chance that we are incorrectly rejecting the null hypothesis). However, the sample mean in the Framingham Offspring study is 200.3, less than 3 units different from the national mean of 203. The reason that the data are so highly statistically significant is due to the very large sample size. It is always important to assess both statistical and clinical significance of data. This is particularly relevant when the sample size is large. Is a 3 unit difference in total cholesterol a meaningful difference?

Consider again the NCHS-reported mean total cholesterol level in 2002 for all adults of 203. Suppose a new drug is proposed to lower total cholesterol. A study is designed to evaluate the efficacy of the drug in lowering cholesterol. Fifteen patients are enrolled in the study and asked to take the new drug for 6 weeks. At the end of 6 weeks, each patient's total cholesterol level is measured and the sample statistics are as follows: n=15, x̄ =195.9 and s=28.7. Is there statistical evidence of a reduction in mean total cholesterol in patients after using the new drug for 6 weeks? We will run the test using the five-step approach.

H 0 : μ= 203 H 1 : μ< 203 α=0.05

- Step 2. Select the appropriate test statistic.

Because the sample size is small (n<30) the appropriate test statistic is

This is a lower tailed test, using a t statistic and a 5% level of significance. In order to determine the critical value of t, we need degrees of freedom, df, defined as df=n-1. In this example df=15-1=14. The critical value for a lower tailed test with df=14 and a =0.05 is -2.145 and the decision rule is as follows: Reject H 0 if t < -2.145.

We do not reject H 0 because -0.96 > -2.145. We do not have statistically significant evidence at α=0.05 to show that the mean total cholesterol level is lower than the national mean in patients taking the new drug for 6 weeks. Again, because we failed to reject the null hypothesis we make a weaker concluding statement allowing for the possibility that we may have committed a Type II error (i.e., failed to reject H 0 when in fact the drug is efficacious).

This example raises an important issue in terms of study design. In this example we assume in the null hypothesis that the mean cholesterol level is 203. This is taken to be the mean cholesterol level in patients without treatment. Is this an appropriate comparator? Alternative and potentially more efficient study designs to evaluate the effect of the new drug could involve two treatment groups, where one group receives the new drug and the other does not, or we could measure each patient's baseline or pre-treatment cholesterol level and then assess changes from baseline to 6 weeks post-treatment. These designs are also discussed here.

Video - Comparing a Sample Mean to Known Population Mean (8:20)

Link to transcript of the video

## Tests with One Sample, Dichotomous Outcome

Hypothesis testing applications with a dichotomous outcome variable in a single population are also performed according to the five-step procedure. Similar to tests for means, a key component is setting up the null and research hypotheses. The objective is to compare the proportion of successes in a single population to a known proportion (p 0 ). That known proportion is generally derived from another study or report and is sometimes called a historical control. It is important in setting up the hypotheses in a one sample test that the proportion specified in the null hypothesis is a fair and reasonable comparator.

In one sample tests for a dichotomous outcome, we set up our hypotheses against an appropriate comparator. We select a sample and compute descriptive statistics on the sample data. Specifically, we compute the sample size (n) and the sample proportion which is computed by taking the ratio of the number of successes to the sample size,

We then determine the appropriate test statistic (Step 2) for the hypothesis test. The formula for the test statistic is given below.

Test Statistic for Testing H 0 : p = p 0

if min(np 0 , n(1-p 0 )) > 5

The formula above is appropriate for large samples, defined when the smaller of np 0 and n(1-p 0 ) is at least 5. This is similar, but not identical, to the condition required for appropriate use of the confidence interval formula for a population proportion, i.e.,

Here we use the proportion specified in the null hypothesis as the true proportion of successes rather than the sample proportion. If we fail to satisfy the condition, then alternative procedures, called exact methods must be used to test the hypothesis about the population proportion.

Example:

The NCHS report indicated that in 2002 the prevalence of cigarette smoking among American adults was 21.1%. Data on prevalent smoking in n=3,536 participants who attended the seventh examination of the Offspring in the Framingham Heart Study indicated that 482/3,536 = 13.6% of the respondents were currently smoking at the time of the exam. Suppose we want to assess whether the prevalence of smoking is lower in the Framingham Offspring sample given the focus on cardiovascular health in that community. Is there evidence of a statistically lower prevalence of smoking in the Framingham Offspring study as compared to the prevalence among all Americans?

H 0 : p = 0.211 H 1 : p < 0.211 α=0.05

We must first check that the sample size is adequate. Specifically, we need to check min(np 0 , n(1-p 0 )) = min( 3,536(0.211), 3,536(1-0.211))=min(746, 2790)=746. The sample size is more than adequate so the following formula can be used:

This is a lower tailed test, using a Z statistic and a 5% level of significance. Reject H 0 if Z < -1.645.

We reject H 0 because -10.93 < -1.645. We have statistically significant evidence at α=0.05 to show that the prevalence of smoking in the Framingham Offspring is lower than the prevalence nationally (21.1%). Here, p < 0.0001.

The NCHS report indicated that in 2002, 75% of children aged 2 to 17 saw a dentist in the past year. An investigator wants to assess whether use of dental services is similar in children living in the city of Boston. A sample of 125 children aged 2 to 17 living in Boston are surveyed and 64 reported seeing a dentist over the past 12 months. Is there a significant difference in use of dental services between children living in Boston and the national data?

Calculate this on your own before checking the answer.

Video - Hypothesis Test for One Sample and a Dichotomous Outcome (3:55)

## Tests with Two Independent Samples, Continuous Outcome

There are many applications where it is of interest to compare two independent groups with respect to their mean scores on a continuous outcome. Here we compare means between groups, but rather than generating an estimate of the difference, we will test whether the observed difference (increase, decrease or difference) is statistically significant or not. Remember, that hypothesis testing gives an assessment of statistical significance, whereas estimation gives an estimate of effect and both are important.

Here we discuss the comparison of means when the two comparison groups are independent or physically separate. The two groups might be determined by a particular attribute (e.g., sex, diagnosis of cardiovascular disease) or might be set up by the investigator (e.g., participants assigned to receive an experimental treatment or placebo). The first step in the analysis involves computing descriptive statistics on each of the two samples. Specifically, we compute the sample size, mean and standard deviation in each sample and we denote these summary statistics as follows:

for sample 1:

for sample 2:

The designation of sample 1 and sample 2 is arbitrary. In a clinical trial setting the convention is to call the treatment group 1 and the control group 2. However, when comparing men and women, for example, either group can be 1 or 2.

In the two independent samples application with a continuous outcome, the parameter of interest in the test of hypothesis is the difference in population means, μ 1 -μ 2 . The null hypothesis is always that there is no difference between groups with respect to means, i.e.,

The null hypothesis can also be written as follows: H 0 : μ 1 = μ 2 . In the research hypothesis, an investigator can hypothesize that the first mean is larger than the second (H 1 : μ 1 > μ 2 ), that the first mean is smaller than the second (H 1 : μ 1 < μ 2 ), or that the means are different (H 1 : μ 1 ≠ μ 2 ). The three different alternatives represent upper-, lower-, and two-tailed tests, respectively. The following test statistics are used to test these hypotheses.

Test Statistics for Testing H 0 : μ 1 = μ 2

- if n 1 > 30 and n 2 > 30
- if n 1 < 30 or n 2 < 30

NOTE: The formulas above assume equal variability in the two populations (i.e., the population variances are equal, or s 1 2 = s 2 2 ). This means that the outcome is equally variable in each of the comparison populations. For analysis, we have samples from each of the comparison populations. If the sample variances are similar, then the assumption about variability in the populations is probably reasonable. As a guideline, if the ratio of the sample variances, s 1 2 /s 2 2 is between 0.5 and 2 (i.e., if one variance is no more than double the other), then the formulas above are appropriate. If the ratio of the sample variances is greater than 2 or less than 0.5 then alternative formulas must be used to account for the heterogeneity in variances.

The test statistics include Sp, which is the pooled estimate of the common standard deviation (again assuming that the variances in the populations are similar) computed as the weighted average of the standard deviations in the samples as follows:

Because we are assuming equal variances between groups, we pool the information on variability (sample variances) to generate an estimate of the variability in the population. Note: Because Sp is a weighted average of the standard deviations in the sample, Sp will always be in between s 1 and s 2 .)

Data measured on n=3,539 participants who attended the seventh examination of the Offspring in the Framingham Heart Study are shown below.

Suppose we now wish to assess whether there is a statistically significant difference in mean systolic blood pressures between men and women using a 5% level of significance.

H 0 : μ 1 = μ 2

H 1 : μ 1 ≠ μ 2 α=0.05

Because both samples are large ( > 30), we can use the Z test statistic as opposed to t. Note that statistical computing packages use t throughout. Before implementing the formula, we first check whether the assumption of equality of population variances is reasonable. The guideline suggests investigating the ratio of the sample variances, s 1 2 /s 2 2 . Suppose we call the men group 1 and the women group 2. Again, this is arbitrary; it only needs to be noted when interpreting the results. The ratio of the sample variances is 17.5 2 /20.1 2 = 0.76, which falls between 0.5 and 2 suggesting that the assumption of equality of population variances is reasonable. The appropriate test statistic is

We now substitute the sample data into the formula for the test statistic identified in Step 2. Before substituting, we will first compute Sp, the pooled estimate of the common standard deviation.

Notice that the pooled estimate of the common standard deviation, Sp, falls in between the standard deviations in the comparison groups (i.e., 17.5 and 20.1). Sp is slightly closer in value to the standard deviation in the women (20.1) as there were slightly more women in the sample. Recall, Sp is a weight average of the standard deviations in the comparison groups, weighted by the respective sample sizes.

Now the test statistic:

We reject H 0 because 2.66 > 1.960. We have statistically significant evidence at α=0.05 to show that there is a difference in mean systolic blood pressures between men and women. The p-value is p < 0.010.

Here again we find that there is a statistically significant difference in mean systolic blood pressures between men and women at p < 0.010. Notice that there is a very small difference in the sample means (128.2-126.5 = 1.7 units), but this difference is beyond what would be expected by chance. Is this a clinically meaningful difference? The large sample size in this example is driving the statistical significance. A 95% confidence interval for the difference in mean systolic blood pressures is: 1.7 + 1.26 or (0.44, 2.96). The confidence interval provides an assessment of the magnitude of the difference between means whereas the test of hypothesis and p-value provide an assessment of the statistical significance of the difference.

Above we performed a study to evaluate a new drug designed to lower total cholesterol. The study involved one sample of patients, each patient took the new drug for 6 weeks and had their cholesterol measured. As a means of evaluating the efficacy of the new drug, the mean total cholesterol following 6 weeks of treatment was compared to the NCHS-reported mean total cholesterol level in 2002 for all adults of 203. At the end of the example, we discussed the appropriateness of the fixed comparator as well as an alternative study design to evaluate the effect of the new drug involving two treatment groups, where one group receives the new drug and the other does not. Here, we revisit the example with a concurrent or parallel control group, which is very typical in randomized controlled trials or clinical trials (refer to the EP713 module on Clinical Trials).

A new drug is proposed to lower total cholesterol. A randomized controlled trial is designed to evaluate the efficacy of the medication in lowering cholesterol. Thirty participants are enrolled in the trial and are randomly assigned to receive either the new drug or a placebo. The participants do not know which treatment they are assigned. Each participant is asked to take the assigned treatment for 6 weeks. At the end of 6 weeks, each patient's total cholesterol level is measured and the sample statistics are as follows.

Is there statistical evidence of a reduction in mean total cholesterol in patients taking the new drug for 6 weeks as compared to participants taking placebo? We will run the test using the five-step approach.

H 0 : μ 1 = μ 2 H 1 : μ 1 < μ 2 α=0.05

Because both samples are small (< 30), we use the t test statistic. Before implementing the formula, we first check whether the assumption of equality of population variances is reasonable. The ratio of the sample variances, s 1 2 /s 2 2 =28.7 2 /30.3 2 = 0.90, which falls between 0.5 and 2, suggesting that the assumption of equality of population variances is reasonable. The appropriate test statistic is:

This is a lower-tailed test, using a t statistic and a 5% level of significance. The appropriate critical value can be found in the t Table (in More Resources to the right). In order to determine the critical value of t we need degrees of freedom, df, defined as df=n 1 +n 2 -2 = 15+15-2=28. The critical value for a lower tailed test with df=28 and α=0.05 is -1.701 and the decision rule is: Reject H 0 if t < -1.701.

Now the test statistic,

We reject H 0 because -2.92 < -1.701. We have statistically significant evidence at α=0.05 to show that the mean total cholesterol level is lower in patients taking the new drug for 6 weeks as compared to patients taking placebo, p < 0.005.

The clinical trial in this example finds a statistically significant reduction in total cholesterol, whereas in the previous example where we had a historical control (as opposed to a parallel control group) we did not demonstrate efficacy of the new drug. Notice that the mean total cholesterol level in patients taking placebo is 217.4 which is very different from the mean cholesterol reported among all Americans in 2002 of 203 and used as the comparator in the prior example. The historical control value may not have been the most appropriate comparator as cholesterol levels have been increasing over time. In the next section, we present another design that can be used to assess the efficacy of the new drug.

Video - Comparison of Two Independent Samples With a Continuous Outcome (8:02)

## Tests with Matched Samples, Continuous Outcome

In the previous section we compared two groups with respect to their mean scores on a continuous outcome. An alternative study design is to compare matched or paired samples. The two comparison groups are said to be dependent, and the data can arise from a single sample of participants where each participant is measured twice (possibly before and after an intervention) or from two samples that are matched on specific characteristics (e.g., siblings). When the samples are dependent, we focus on difference scores in each participant or between members of a pair and the test of hypothesis is based on the mean difference, μ d . The null hypothesis again reflects "no difference" and is stated as H 0 : μ d =0 . Note that there are some instances where it is of interest to test whether there is a difference of a particular magnitude (e.g., μ d =5) but in most instances the null hypothesis reflects no difference (i.e., μ d =0).

The appropriate formula for the test of hypothesis depends on the sample size. The formulas are shown below and are identical to those we presented for estimating the mean of a single sample presented (e.g., when comparing against an external or historical control), except here we focus on difference scores.

Test Statistics for Testing H 0 : μ d =0

A new drug is proposed to lower total cholesterol and a study is designed to evaluate the efficacy of the drug in lowering cholesterol. Fifteen patients agree to participate in the study and each is asked to take the new drug for 6 weeks. However, before starting the treatment, each patient's total cholesterol level is measured. The initial measurement is a pre-treatment or baseline value. After taking the drug for 6 weeks, each patient's total cholesterol level is measured again and the data are shown below. The rightmost column contains difference scores for each patient, computed by subtracting the 6 week cholesterol level from the baseline level. The differences represent the reduction in total cholesterol over 4 weeks. (The differences could have been computed by subtracting the baseline total cholesterol level from the level measured at 6 weeks. The way in which the differences are computed does not affect the outcome of the analysis only the interpretation.)

Because the differences are computed by subtracting the cholesterols measured at 6 weeks from the baseline values, positive differences indicate reductions and negative differences indicate increases (e.g., participant 12 increases by 2 units over 6 weeks). The goal here is to test whether there is a statistically significant reduction in cholesterol. Because of the way in which we computed the differences, we want to look for an increase in the mean difference (i.e., a positive reduction). In order to conduct the test, we need to summarize the differences. In this sample, we have

The calculations are shown below.

Is there statistical evidence of a reduction in mean total cholesterol in patients after using the new medication for 6 weeks? We will run the test using the five-step approach.

H 0 : μ d = 0 H 1 : μ d > 0 α=0.05

NOTE: If we had computed differences by subtracting the baseline level from the level measured at 6 weeks then negative differences would have reflected reductions and the research hypothesis would have been H 1 : μ d < 0.

- Step 2 . Select the appropriate test statistic.

This is an upper-tailed test, using a t statistic and a 5% level of significance. The appropriate critical value can be found in the t Table at the right, with df=15-1=14. The critical value for an upper-tailed test with df=14 and α=0.05 is 2.145 and the decision rule is Reject H 0 if t > 2.145.

We now substitute the sample data into the formula for the test statistic identified in Step 2.

We reject H 0 because 4.61 > 2.145. We have statistically significant evidence at α=0.05 to show that there is a reduction in cholesterol levels over 6 weeks.

Here we illustrate the use of a matched design to test the efficacy of a new drug to lower total cholesterol. We also considered a parallel design (randomized clinical trial) and a study using a historical comparator. It is extremely important to design studies that are best suited to detect a meaningful difference when one exists. There are often several alternatives and investigators work with biostatisticians to determine the best design for each application. It is worth noting that the matched design used here can be problematic in that observed differences may only reflect a "placebo" effect. All participants took the assigned medication, but is the observed reduction attributable to the medication or a result of these participation in a study.

Video - Hypothesis Testing With a Matched Sample and a Continuous Outcome (3:11)

## Tests with Two Independent Samples, Dichotomous Outcome

There are several approaches that can be used to test hypotheses concerning two independent proportions. Here we present one approach - the chi-square test of independence is an alternative, equivalent, and perhaps more popular approach to the same analysis. Hypothesis testing with the chi-square test is addressed in the third module in this series: BS704_HypothesisTesting-ChiSquare.

In tests of hypothesis comparing proportions between two independent groups, one test is performed and results can be interpreted to apply to a risk difference, relative risk or odds ratio. As a reminder, the risk difference is computed by taking the difference in proportions between comparison groups, the risk ratio is computed by taking the ratio of proportions, and the odds ratio is computed by taking the ratio of the odds of success in the comparison groups. Because the null values for the risk difference, the risk ratio and the odds ratio are different, the hypotheses in tests of hypothesis look slightly different depending on which measure is used. When performing tests of hypothesis for the risk difference, relative risk or odds ratio, the convention is to label the exposed or treated group 1 and the unexposed or control group 2.

For example, suppose a study is designed to assess whether there is a significant difference in proportions in two independent comparison groups. The test of interest is as follows:

H 0 : p 1 = p 2 versus H 1 : p 1 ≠ p 2 .

The following are the hypothesis for testing for a difference in proportions using the risk difference, the risk ratio and the odds ratio. First, the hypotheses above are equivalent to the following:

- For the risk difference, H 0 : p 1 - p 2 = 0 versus H 1 : p 1 - p 2 ≠ 0 which are, by definition, equal to H 0 : RD = 0 versus H 1 : RD ≠ 0.
- If an investigator wants to focus on the risk ratio, the equivalent hypotheses are H 0 : RR = 1 versus H 1 : RR ≠ 1.
- If the investigator wants to focus on the odds ratio, the equivalent hypotheses are H 0 : OR = 1 versus H 1 : OR ≠ 1.

Suppose a test is performed to test H 0 : RD = 0 versus H 1 : RD ≠ 0 and the test rejects H 0 at α=0.05. Based on this test we can conclude that there is significant evidence, α=0.05, of a difference in proportions, significant evidence that the risk difference is not zero, significant evidence that the risk ratio and odds ratio are not one. The risk difference is analogous to the difference in means when the outcome is continuous. Here the parameter of interest is the difference in proportions in the population, RD = p 1 -p 2 and the null value for the risk difference is zero. In a test of hypothesis for the risk difference, the null hypothesis is always H 0 : RD = 0. This is equivalent to H 0 : RR = 1 and H 0 : OR = 1. In the research hypothesis, an investigator can hypothesize that the first proportion is larger than the second (H 1 : p 1 > p 2 , which is equivalent to H 1 : RD > 0, H 1 : RR > 1 and H 1 : OR > 1), that the first proportion is smaller than the second (H 1 : p 1 < p 2 , which is equivalent to H 1 : RD < 0, H 1 : RR < 1 and H 1 : OR < 1), or that the proportions are different (H 1 : p 1 ≠ p 2 , which is equivalent to H 1 : RD ≠ 0, H 1 : RR ≠ 1 and H 1 : OR ≠

1). The three different alternatives represent upper-, lower- and two-tailed tests, respectively.

The formula for the test of hypothesis for the difference in proportions is given below.

Test Statistics for Testing H 0 : p 1 = p

The formula above is appropriate for large samples, defined as at least 5 successes (np > 5) and at least 5 failures (n(1-p > 5)) in each of the two samples. If there are fewer than 5 successes or failures in either comparison group, then alternative procedures, called exact methods must be used to estimate the difference in population proportions.

The following table summarizes data from n=3,799 participants who attended the fifth examination of the Offspring in the Framingham Heart Study. The outcome of interest is prevalent CVD and we want to test whether the prevalence of CVD is significantly higher in smokers as compared to non-smokers.

The prevalence of CVD (or proportion of participants with prevalent CVD) among non-smokers is 298/3,055 = 0.0975 and the prevalence of CVD among current smokers is 81/744 = 0.1089. Here smoking status defines the comparison groups and we will call the current smokers group 1 (exposed) and the non-smokers (unexposed) group 2. The test of hypothesis is conducted below using the five step approach.

H 0 : p 1 = p 2 H 1 : p 1 ≠ p 2 α=0.05

- Step 2. Select the appropriate test statistic.

We must first check that the sample size is adequate. Specifically, we need to ensure that we have at least 5 successes and 5 failures in each comparison group. In this example, we have more than enough successes (cases of prevalent CVD) and failures (persons free of CVD) in each comparison group. The sample size is more than adequate so the following formula can be used:

Reject H 0 if Z < -1.960 or if Z > 1.960.

We now substitute the sample data into the formula for the test statistic identified in Step 2. We first compute the overall proportion of successes:

We now substitute to compute the test statistic.

- Step 5. Conclusion.

We do not reject H 0 because -1.960 < 0.927 < 1.960. We do not have statistically significant evidence at α=0.05 to show that there is a difference in prevalent CVD between smokers and non-smokers.

A 95% confidence interval for the difference in prevalent CVD (or risk difference) between smokers and non-smokers as 0.0114 + 0.0247, or between -0.0133 and 0.0361. Because the 95% confidence interval for the risk difference includes zero we again conclude that there is no statistically significant difference in prevalent CVD between smokers and non-smokers.

Smoking has been shown over and over to be a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. What might explain the fact that we did not observe a statistically significant difference using data from the Framingham Heart Study? HINT: Here we consider prevalent CVD, would the results have been different if we considered incident CVD?

A randomized trial is designed to evaluate the effectiveness of a newly developed pain reliever designed to reduce pain in patients following joint replacement surgery. The trial compares the new pain reliever to the pain reliever currently in use (called the standard of care). A total of 100 patients undergoing joint replacement surgery agreed to participate in the trial. Patients were randomly assigned to receive either the new pain reliever or the standard pain reliever following surgery and were blind to the treatment assignment. Before receiving the assigned treatment, patients were asked to rate their pain on a scale of 0-10 with higher scores indicative of more pain. Each patient was then given the assigned treatment and after 30 minutes was again asked to rate their pain on the same scale. The primary outcome was a reduction in pain of 3 or more scale points (defined by clinicians as a clinically meaningful reduction). The following data were observed in the trial.

We now test whether there is a statistically significant difference in the proportions of patients reporting a meaningful reduction (i.e., a reduction of 3 or more scale points) using the five step approach.

H 0 : p 1 = p 2 H 1 : p 1 ≠ p 2 α=0.05

Here the new or experimental pain reliever is group 1 and the standard pain reliever is group 2.

We must first check that the sample size is adequate. Specifically, we need to ensure that we have at least 5 successes and 5 failures in each comparison group, i.e.,

In this example, we have min(50(0.46), 50(1-0.46), 50(0.22), 50(1-0.22)) = min(23, 27, 11, 39) = 11. The sample size is adequate so the following formula can be used

We reject H 0 because 2.526 > 1960. We have statistically significant evidence at a =0.05 to show that there is a difference in the proportions of patients on the new pain reliever reporting a meaningful reduction (i.e., a reduction of 3 or more scale points) as compared to patients on the standard pain reliever.

A 95% confidence interval for the difference in proportions of patients on the new pain reliever reporting a meaningful reduction (i.e., a reduction of 3 or more scale points) as compared to patients on the standard pain reliever is 0.24 + 0.18 or between 0.06 and 0.42. Because the 95% confidence interval does not include zero we concluded that there was a statistically significant difference in proportions which is consistent with the test of hypothesis result.

Again, the procedures discussed here apply to applications where there are two independent comparison groups and a dichotomous outcome. There are other applications in which it is of interest to compare a dichotomous outcome in matched or paired samples. For example, in a clinical trial we might wish to test the effectiveness of a new antibiotic eye drop for the treatment of bacterial conjunctivitis. Participants use the new antibiotic eye drop in one eye and a comparator (placebo or active control treatment) in the other. The success of the treatment (yes/no) is recorded for each participant for each eye. Because the two assessments (success or failure) are paired, we cannot use the procedures discussed here. The appropriate test is called McNemar's test (sometimes called McNemar's test for dependent proportions).

Vide0 - Hypothesis Testing With Two Independent Samples and a Dichotomous Outcome (2:55)

Here we presented hypothesis testing techniques for means and proportions in one and two sample situations. Tests of hypothesis involve several steps, including specifying the null and alternative or research hypothesis, selecting and computing an appropriate test statistic, setting up a decision rule and drawing a conclusion. There are many details to consider in hypothesis testing. The first is to determine the appropriate test. We discussed Z and t tests here for different applications. The appropriate test depends on the distribution of the outcome variable (continuous or dichotomous), the number of comparison groups (one, two) and whether the comparison groups are independent or dependent. The following table summarizes the different tests of hypothesis discussed here.

- Continuous Outcome, One Sample: H0: μ = μ0
- Continuous Outcome, Two Independent Samples: H0: μ1 = μ2
- Continuous Outcome, Two Matched Samples: H0: μd = 0
- Dichotomous Outcome, One Sample: H0: p = p 0
- Dichotomous Outcome, Two Independent Samples: H0: p1 = p2, RD=0, RR=1, OR=1

Once the type of test is determined, the details of the test must be specified. Specifically, the null and alternative hypotheses must be clearly stated. The null hypothesis always reflects the "no change" or "no difference" situation. The alternative or research hypothesis reflects the investigator's belief. The investigator might hypothesize that a parameter (e.g., a mean, proportion, difference in means or proportions) will increase, will decrease or will be different under specific conditions (sometimes the conditions are different experimental conditions and other times the conditions are simply different groups of participants). Once the hypotheses are specified, data are collected and summarized. The appropriate test is then conducted according to the five step approach. If the test leads to rejection of the null hypothesis, an approximate p-value is computed to summarize the significance of the findings. When tests of hypothesis are conducted using statistical computing packages, exact p-values are computed. Because the statistical tables in this textbook are limited, we can only approximate p-values. If the test fails to reject the null hypothesis, then a weaker concluding statement is made for the following reason.

In hypothesis testing, there are two types of errors that can be committed. A Type I error occurs when a test incorrectly rejects the null hypothesis. This is referred to as a false positive result, and the probability that this occurs is equal to the level of significance, α. The investigator chooses the level of significance in Step 1, and purposely chooses a small value such as α=0.05 to control the probability of committing a Type I error. A Type II error occurs when a test fails to reject the null hypothesis when in fact it is false. The probability that this occurs is equal to β. Unfortunately, the investigator cannot specify β at the outset because it depends on several factors including the sample size (smaller samples have higher b), the level of significance (β decreases as a increases), and the difference in the parameter under the null and alternative hypothesis.

We noted in several examples in this chapter, the relationship between confidence intervals and tests of hypothesis. The approaches are different, yet related. It is possible to draw a conclusion about statistical significance by examining a confidence interval. For example, if a 95% confidence interval does not contain the null value (e.g., zero when analyzing a mean difference or risk difference, one when analyzing relative risks or odds ratios), then one can conclude that a two-sided test of hypothesis would reject the null at α=0.05. It is important to note that the correspondence between a confidence interval and test of hypothesis relates to a two-sided test and that the confidence level corresponds to a specific level of significance (e.g., 95% to α=0.05, 90% to α=0.10 and so on). The exact significance of the test, the p-value, can only be determined using the hypothesis testing approach and the p-value provides an assessment of the strength of the evidence and not an estimate of the effect.

## Answers to Selected Problems

Dental services problem - bottom of page 5.

- Step 1: Set up hypotheses and determine the level of significance.

α=0.05

- Step 2: Select the appropriate test statistic.

First, determine whether the sample size is adequate.

Therefore the sample size is adequate, and we can use the following formula:

- Step 3: Set up the decision rule.

Reject H0 if Z is less than or equal to -1.96 or if Z is greater than or equal to 1.96.

- Step 4: Compute the test statistic
- Step 5: Conclusion.

We reject the null hypothesis because -6.15<-1.96. Therefore there is a statistically significant difference in the proportion of children in Boston using dental services compated to the national proportion.

Teach yourself statistics

## Hypothesis Test for a Mean

This lesson explains how to conduct a hypothesis test of a mean, when the following conditions are met:

- The sampling method is simple random sampling .
- The sampling distribution is normal or nearly normal.

Generally, the sampling distribution will be approximately normally distributed if any of the following conditions apply.

- The population distribution is normal.
- The population distribution is symmetric , unimodal , without outliers , and the sample size is 15 or less.
- The population distribution is moderately skewed , unimodal, without outliers, and the sample size is between 16 and 40.
- The sample size is greater than 40, without outliers.

This approach consists of four steps: (1) state the hypotheses, (2) formulate an analysis plan, (3) analyze sample data, and (4) interpret results.

## State the Hypotheses

Every hypothesis test requires the analyst to state a null hypothesis and an alternative hypothesis . The hypotheses are stated in such a way that they are mutually exclusive. That is, if one is true, the other must be false; and vice versa.

The table below shows three sets of hypotheses. Each makes a statement about how the population mean μ is related to a specified value M . (In the table, the symbol ≠ means " not equal to ".)

The first set of hypotheses (Set 1) is an example of a two-tailed test , since an extreme value on either side of the sampling distribution would cause a researcher to reject the null hypothesis. The other two sets of hypotheses (Sets 2 and 3) are one-tailed tests , since an extreme value on only one side of the sampling distribution would cause a researcher to reject the null hypothesis.

## Formulate an Analysis Plan

The analysis plan describes how to use sample data to accept or reject the null hypothesis. It should specify the following elements.

- Significance level. Often, researchers choose significance levels equal to 0.01, 0.05, or 0.10; but any value between 0 and 1 can be used.
- Test method. Use the one-sample t-test to determine whether the hypothesized mean differs significantly from the observed sample mean.

## Analyze Sample Data

Using sample data, conduct a one-sample t-test. This involves finding the standard error, degrees of freedom, test statistic, and the P-value associated with the test statistic.

SE = s * sqrt{ ( 1/n ) * [ ( N - n ) / ( N - 1 ) ] }

SE = s / sqrt( n )

- Degrees of freedom. The degrees of freedom (DF) is equal to the sample size (n) minus one. Thus, DF = n - 1.

t = ( x - μ) / SE

- P-value. The P-value is the probability of observing a sample statistic as extreme as the test statistic. Since the test statistic is a t statistic, use the t Distribution Calculator to assess the probability associated with the t statistic, given the degrees of freedom computed above. (See sample problems at the end of this lesson for examples of how this is done.)

## Sample Size Calculator

As you probably noticed, the process of hypothesis testing can be complex. When you need to test a hypothesis about a mean score, consider using the Sample Size Calculator. The calculator is fairly easy to use, and it is free. You can find the Sample Size Calculator in Stat Trek's main menu under the Stat Tools tab. Or you can tap the button below.

## Interpret Results

If the sample findings are unlikely, given the null hypothesis, the researcher rejects the null hypothesis. Typically, this involves comparing the P-value to the significance level , and rejecting the null hypothesis when the P-value is less than the significance level.

## Test Your Understanding

In this section, two sample problems illustrate how to conduct a hypothesis test of a mean score. The first problem involves a two-tailed test; the second problem, a one-tailed test.

Problem 1: Two-Tailed Test

An inventor has developed a new, energy-efficient lawn mower engine. He claims that the engine will run continuously for 5 hours (300 minutes) on a single gallon of regular gasoline. From his stock of 2000 engines, the inventor selects a simple random sample of 50 engines for testing. The engines run for an average of 295 minutes, with a standard deviation of 20 minutes. Test the null hypothesis that the mean run time is 300 minutes against the alternative hypothesis that the mean run time is not 300 minutes. Use a 0.05 level of significance. (Assume that run times for the population of engines are normally distributed.)

Solution: The solution to this problem takes four steps: (1) state the hypotheses, (2) formulate an analysis plan, (3) analyze sample data, and (4) interpret results. We work through those steps below:

Null hypothesis: μ = 300

Alternative hypothesis: μ ≠ 300

- Formulate an analysis plan . For this analysis, the significance level is 0.05. The test method is a one-sample t-test .

SE = s / sqrt(n) = 20 / sqrt(50) = 20/7.07 = 2.83

DF = n - 1 = 50 - 1 = 49

t = ( x - μ) / SE = (295 - 300)/2.83 = -1.77

where s is the standard deviation of the sample, x is the sample mean, μ is the hypothesized population mean, and n is the sample size.

Since we have a two-tailed test , the P-value is the probability that the t statistic having 49 degrees of freedom is less than -1.77 or greater than 1.77. We use the t Distribution Calculator to find P(t < -1.77) is about 0.04.

- If you enter 1.77 as the sample mean in the t Distribution Calculator, you will find the that the P(t < 1.77) is about 0.04. Therefore, P(t > 1.77) is 1 minus 0.96 or 0.04. Thus, the P-value = 0.04 + 0.04 = 0.08.
- Interpret results . Since the P-value (0.08) is greater than the significance level (0.05), we cannot reject the null hypothesis.

Note: If you use this approach on an exam, you may also want to mention why this approach is appropriate. Specifically, the approach is appropriate because the sampling method was simple random sampling, the population was normally distributed, and the sample size was small relative to the population size (less than 5%).

Problem 2: One-Tailed Test

Bon Air Elementary School has 1000 students. The principal of the school thinks that the average IQ of students at Bon Air is at least 110. To prove her point, she administers an IQ test to 20 randomly selected students. Among the sampled students, the average IQ is 108 with a standard deviation of 10. Based on these results, should the principal accept or reject her original hypothesis? Assume a significance level of 0.01. (Assume that test scores in the population of engines are normally distributed.)

Null hypothesis: μ >= 110

Alternative hypothesis: μ < 110

- Formulate an analysis plan . For this analysis, the significance level is 0.01. The test method is a one-sample t-test .

SE = s / sqrt(n) = 10 / sqrt(20) = 10/4.472 = 2.236

DF = n - 1 = 20 - 1 = 19

t = ( x - μ) / SE = (108 - 110)/2.236 = -0.894

Here is the logic of the analysis: Given the alternative hypothesis (μ < 110), we want to know whether the observed sample mean is small enough to cause us to reject the null hypothesis.

The observed sample mean produced a t statistic test statistic of -0.894. We use the t Distribution Calculator to find P(t < -0.894) is about 0.19.

- This means we would expect to find a sample mean of 108 or smaller in 19 percent of our samples, if the true population IQ were 110. Thus the P-value in this analysis is 0.19.
- Interpret results . Since the P-value (0.19) is greater than the significance level (0.01), we cannot reject the null hypothesis.

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## 8.3: Hypothesis Testing of Single Mean

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## Learning Objectives

- To learn how to apply the five-step test procedure for test of hypotheses concerning a population mean when the sample size is small.

In the previous section hypotheses testing for population means was described in the case of large samples. The statistical validity of the tests was insured by the Central Limit Theorem, with essentially no assumptions on the distribution of the population. When sample sizes are small, as is often the case in practice, the Central Limit Theorem does not apply. One must then impose stricter assumptions on the population to give statistical validity to the test procedure. One common assumption is that the population from which the sample is taken has a normal probability distribution to begin with. Under such circumstances, if the population standard deviation is known, then the test statistic

\[\frac{(\bar{x}-\mu _0)}{\sigma /\sqrt{n}} \nonumber \]

still has the standard normal distribution, as in the previous two sections. If \(\sigma\) is unknown and is approximated by the sample standard deviation \(s\), then the resulting test statistic

\[\dfrac{(\bar{x}-\mu _0)}{s/\sqrt{n}} \nonumber \]

follows Student’s \(t\)-distribution with \(n-1\) degrees of freedom.

## Standardized Test Statistics for Small Sample Hypothesis Tests Concerning a Single Population Mean

If \(\sigma\) is known: \[Z=\frac{\bar{x}-\mu _0}{\sigma /\sqrt{n}} \nonumber \]

If \(\sigma\) is unknown: \[T=\frac{\bar{x}-\mu _0}{s /\sqrt{n}} \nonumber \]

- The first test statistic (\(\sigma\) known) has the standard normal distribution.
- The second test statistic (\(\sigma\) unknown) has Student’s \(t\)-distribution with \(n-1\) degrees of freedom.
- The population must be normally distributed.

The distribution of the second standardized test statistic (the one containing \(s\)) and the corresponding rejection region for each form of the alternative hypothesis (left-tailed, right-tailed, or two-tailed), is shown in Figure \(\PageIndex{1}\). This is just like Figure 8.2.1 except that now the critical values are from the \(t\)-distribution. Figure 8.2.1 still applies to the first standardized test statistic (the one containing (\(\sigma\)) since it follows the standard normal distribution.

The \(p\)-value of a test of hypotheses for which the test statistic has Student’s \(t\)-distribution can be computed using statistical software, but it is impractical to do so using tables, since that would require \(30\) tables analogous to Figure 7.1.5, one for each degree of freedom from \(1\) to \(30\). Figure 7.1.6 can be used to approximate the \(p\)-value of such a test, and this is typically adequate for making a decision using the \(p\)-value approach to hypothesis testing, although not always. For this reason the tests in the two examples in this section will be made following the critical value approach to hypothesis testing summarized at the end of Section 8.1, but after each one we will show how the \(p\)-value approach could have been used.

## Example \(\PageIndex{1}\)

The price of a popular tennis racket at a national chain store is \(\$179\). Portia bought five of the same racket at an online auction site for the following prices:

\[155\; 179\; 175\; 175\; 161 \nonumber \]

Assuming that the auction prices of rackets are normally distributed, determine whether there is sufficient evidence in the sample, at the \(5\%\) level of significance, to conclude that the average price of the racket is less than \(\$179\) if purchased at an online auction.

- Step 1 . The assertion for which evidence must be provided is that the average online price \(\mu\) is less than the average price in retail stores, so the hypothesis test is \[H_0: \mu =179\\ \text{vs}\\ H_a: \mu <179\; @\; \alpha =0.05 \nonumber \]
- Step 2 . The sample is small and the population standard deviation is unknown. Thus the test statistic is \[T=\frac{\bar{x}-\mu _0}{s /\sqrt{n}} \nonumber \] and has the Student \(t\)-distribution with \(n-1=5-1=4\) degrees of freedom.
- Step 3 . From the data we compute \(\bar{x}=169\) and \(s=10.39\). Inserting these values into the formula for the test statistic gives \[T=\frac{\bar{x}-\mu _0}{s /\sqrt{n}}=\frac{169-179}{10.39/\sqrt{5}}=-2.152 \nonumber \]
- Step 4 . Since the symbol in \(H_a\) is “\(<\)” this is a left-tailed test, so there is a single critical value, \(-t_\alpha =-t_{0.05}[df=4]\). Reading from the row labeled \(df=4\) in Figure 7.1.6 its value is \(-2.132\). The rejection region is \((-\infty ,-2.132]\).
- Step 5 . As shown in Figure \(\PageIndex{2}\) the test statistic falls in the rejection region. The decision is to reject \(H_0\). In the context of the problem our conclusion is:

The data provide sufficient evidence, at the \(5\%\) level of significance, to conclude that the average price of such rackets purchased at online auctions is less than \(\$179\).

To perform the test in Example \(\PageIndex{1}\) using the \(p\)-value approach, look in the row in Figure 7.1.6 with the heading \(df=4\) and search for the two \(t\)-values that bracket the unsigned value \(2.152\) of the test statistic. They are \(2.132\) and \(2.776\), in the columns with headings \(t_{0.050}\) and \(t_{0.025}\). They cut off right tails of area \(0.050\) and \(0.025\), so because \(2.152\) is between them it must cut off a tail of area between \(0.050\) and \(0.025\). By symmetry \(-2.152\) cuts off a left tail of area between \(0.050\) and \(0.025\), hence the \(p\)-value corresponding to \(t=-2.152\) is between \(0.025\) and \(0.05\). Although its precise value is unknown, it must be less than \(\alpha =0.05\), so the decision is to reject \(H_0\).

## Example \(\PageIndex{2}\)

A small component in an electronic device has two small holes where another tiny part is fitted. In the manufacturing process the average distance between the two holes must be tightly controlled at \(0.02\) mm, else many units would be defective and wasted. Many times throughout the day quality control engineers take a small sample of the components from the production line, measure the distance between the two holes, and make adjustments if needed. Suppose at one time four units are taken and the distances are measured as

Determine, at the \(1\%\) level of significance, if there is sufficient evidence in the sample to conclude that an adjustment is needed. Assume the distances of interest are normally distributed.

- Step 1 . The assumption is that the process is under control unless there is strong evidence to the contrary. Since a deviation of the average distance to either side is undesirable, the relevant test is \[H_0: \mu =0.02\\ \text{vs}\\ H_a: \mu \neq 0.02\; @\; \alpha =0.01 \nonumber \] where \(\mu\) denotes the mean distance between the holes.
- Step 2 . The sample is small and the population standard deviation is unknown. Thus the test statistic is \[T=\frac{\bar{x}-\mu _0}{s /\sqrt{n}} \nonumber \] and has the Student \(t\)-distribution with \(n-1=4-1=3\) degrees of freedom.
- Step 3 . From the data we compute \(\bar{x}=0.02075\) and \(s=0.00171\). Inserting these values into the formula for the test statistic gives \[T=\frac{\bar{x}-\mu _0}{s /\sqrt{n}}=\frac{0.02075-0.02}{0.00171\sqrt{4}}=0.877 \nonumber \]
- Step 4 . Since the symbol in \(H_a\) is “\(\neq\)” this is a two-tailed test, so there are two critical values, \(\pm t_{\alpha/2} =-t_{0.005}[df=3]\). Reading from the row in Figure 7.1.6 labeled \(df=3\) their values are \(\pm 5.841\). The rejection region is \((-\infty ,-5.841]\cup [5.841,\infty )\).
- Step 5 . As shown in Figure \(\PageIndex{3}\) the test statistic does not fall in the rejection region. The decision is not to reject \(H_0\). In the context of the problem our conclusion is:

The data do not provide sufficient evidence, at the \(1\%\) level of significance, to conclude that the mean distance between the holes in the component differs from \(0.02\) mm.

To perform the test in "Example \(\PageIndex{2}\)" using the \(p\)-value approach, look in the row in Figure 7.1.6 with the heading \(df=3\) and search for the two \(t\)-values that bracket the value \(0.877\) of the test statistic. Actually \(0.877\) is smaller than the smallest number in the row, which is \(0.978\), in the column with heading \(t_{0.200}\). The value \(0.978\) cuts off a right tail of area \(0.200\), so because \(0.877\) is to its left it must cut off a tail of area greater than \(0.200\). Thus the \(p\)-value, which is the double of the area cut off (since the test is two-tailed), is greater than \(0.400\). Although its precise value is unknown, it must be greater than \(\alpha =0.01\), so the decision is not to reject \(H_0\).

## Key Takeaway

- There are two formulas for the test statistic in testing hypotheses about a population mean with small samples. One test statistic follows the standard normal distribution, the other Student’s \(t\)-distribution.
- The population standard deviation is used if it is known, otherwise the sample standard deviation is used.
- Either five-step procedure, critical value or \(p\)-value approach, is used with either test statistic.

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Hypothesis testing involves formulating assumptions about population parameters based on sample statistics and rigorously evaluating these assumptions against empirical evidence. This article sheds light on the significance of hypothesis testing and the critical steps involved in the process.

## What is Hypothesis Testing?

Hypothesis testing is a statistical method that is used to make a statistical decision using experimental data. Hypothesis testing is basically an assumption that we make about a population parameter. It evaluates two mutually exclusive statements about a population to determine which statement is best supported by the sample data.

Example: You say an average height in the class is 30 or a boy is taller than a girl. All of these is an assumption that we are assuming, and we need some statistical way to prove these. We need some mathematical conclusion whatever we are assuming is true.

## Defining Hypotheses

## Key Terms of Hypothesis Testing

- P-value: The P value , or calculated probability, is the probability of finding the observed/extreme results when the null hypothesis(H0) of a study-given problem is true. If your P-value is less than the chosen significance level then you reject the null hypothesis i.e. accept that your sample claims to support the alternative hypothesis.
- Test Statistic: The test statistic is a numerical value calculated from sample data during a hypothesis test, used to determine whether to reject the null hypothesis. It is compared to a critical value or p-value to make decisions about the statistical significance of the observed results.
- Critical value : The critical value in statistics is a threshold or cutoff point used to determine whether to reject the null hypothesis in a hypothesis test.
- Degrees of freedom: Degrees of freedom are associated with the variability or freedom one has in estimating a parameter. The degrees of freedom are related to the sample size and determine the shape.

## Why do we use Hypothesis Testing?

Hypothesis testing is an important procedure in statistics. Hypothesis testing evaluates two mutually exclusive population statements to determine which statement is most supported by sample data. When we say that the findings are statistically significant, thanks to hypothesis testing.

## One-Tailed and Two-Tailed Test

One tailed test focuses on one direction, either greater than or less than a specified value. We use a one-tailed test when there is a clear directional expectation based on prior knowledge or theory. The critical region is located on only one side of the distribution curve. If the sample falls into this critical region, the null hypothesis is rejected in favor of the alternative hypothesis.

## One-Tailed Test

There are two types of one-tailed test:

## Two-Tailed Test

A two-tailed test considers both directions, greater than and less than a specified value.We use a two-tailed test when there is no specific directional expectation, and want to detect any significant difference.

## What are Type 1 and Type 2 errors in Hypothesis Testing?

In hypothesis testing, Type I and Type II errors are two possible errors that researchers can make when drawing conclusions about a population based on a sample of data. These errors are associated with the decisions made regarding the null hypothesis and the alternative hypothesis.

## How does Hypothesis Testing work?

Step 1: define null and alternative hypothesis.

We first identify the problem about which we want to make an assumption keeping in mind that our assumption should be contradictory to one another, assuming Normally distributed data.

## Step 2 – Choose significance level

## Step 3 – Collect and Analyze data.

Gather relevant data through observation or experimentation. Analyze the data using appropriate statistical methods to obtain a test statistic.

## Step 4-Calculate Test Statistic

The data for the tests are evaluated in this step we look for various scores based on the characteristics of data. The choice of the test statistic depends on the type of hypothesis test being conducted.

There are various hypothesis tests, each appropriate for various goal to calculate our test. This could be a Z-test , Chi-square , T-test , and so on.

- Z-test : If population means and standard deviations are known. Z-statistic is commonly used.
- t-test : If population standard deviations are unknown. and sample size is small than t-test statistic is more appropriate.
- Chi-square test : Chi-square test is used for categorical data or for testing independence in contingency tables
- F-test : F-test is often used in analysis of variance (ANOVA) to compare variances or test the equality of means across multiple groups.

We have a smaller dataset, So, T-test is more appropriate to test our hypothesis.

T-statistic is a measure of the difference between the means of two groups relative to the variability within each group. It is calculated as the difference between the sample means divided by the standard error of the difference. It is also known as the t-value or t-score.

## Step 5 – Comparing Test Statistic:

In this stage, we decide where we should accept the null hypothesis or reject the null hypothesis. There are two ways to decide where we should accept or reject the null hypothesis.

## Method A: Using Crtical values

Comparing the test statistic and tabulated critical value we have,

- If Test Statistic>Critical Value: Reject the null hypothesis.
- If Test Statistic≤Critical Value: Fail to reject the null hypothesis.

Note: Critical values are predetermined threshold values that are used to make a decision in hypothesis testing. To determine critical values for hypothesis testing, we typically refer to a statistical distribution table , such as the normal distribution or t-distribution tables based on.

## Method B: Using P-values

We can also come to an conclusion using the p-value,

Note : The p-value is the probability of obtaining a test statistic as extreme as, or more extreme than, the one observed in the sample, assuming the null hypothesis is true. To determine p-value for hypothesis testing, we typically refer to a statistical distribution table , such as the normal distribution or t-distribution tables based on.

## Step 7- Interpret the Results

At last, we can conclude our experiment using method A or B.

## Calculating test statistic

To validate our hypothesis about a population parameter we use statistical functions . We use the z-score, p-value, and level of significance(alpha) to make evidence for our hypothesis for normally distributed data .

## 1. Z-statistics:

When population means and standard deviations are known.

- μ represents the population mean,
- σ is the standard deviation
- and n is the size of the sample.

## 2. T-Statistics

T test is used when n<30,

t-statistic calculation is given by:

- t = t-score,
- x̄ = sample mean
- μ = population mean,
- s = standard deviation of the sample,
- n = sample size

## 3. Chi-Square Test

Chi-Square Test for Independence categorical Data (Non-normally distributed) using:

- i,j are the rows and columns index respectively.

## Real life Hypothesis Testing example

Let’s examine hypothesis testing using two real life situations,

## Case A: D oes a New Drug Affect Blood Pressure?

Imagine a pharmaceutical company has developed a new drug that they believe can effectively lower blood pressure in patients with hypertension. Before bringing the drug to market, they need to conduct a study to assess its impact on blood pressure.

- Before Treatment: 120, 122, 118, 130, 125, 128, 115, 121, 123, 119
- After Treatment: 115, 120, 112, 128, 122, 125, 110, 117, 119, 114

## Step 1 : Define the Hypothesis

- Null Hypothesis : (H 0 )The new drug has no effect on blood pressure.
- Alternate Hypothesis : (H 1 )The new drug has an effect on blood pressure.

## Step 2: Define the Significance level

Let’s consider the Significance level at 0.05, indicating rejection of the null hypothesis.

If the evidence suggests less than a 5% chance of observing the results due to random variation.

## Step 3 : Compute the test statistic

Using paired T-test analyze the data to obtain a test statistic and a p-value.

The test statistic (e.g., T-statistic) is calculated based on the differences between blood pressure measurements before and after treatment.

t = m/(s/√n)

- m = mean of the difference i.e X after, X before
- s = standard deviation of the difference (d) i.e d i = X after, i − X before,
- n = sample size,

then, m= -3.9, s= 1.8 and n= 10

we, calculate the , T-statistic = -9 based on the formula for paired t test

## Step 4: Find the p-value

The calculated t-statistic is -9 and degrees of freedom df = 9, you can find the p-value using statistical software or a t-distribution table.

thus, p-value = 8.538051223166285e-06

Step 5: Result

- If the p-value is less than or equal to 0.05, the researchers reject the null hypothesis.
- If the p-value is greater than 0.05, they fail to reject the null hypothesis.

Conclusion: Since the p-value (8.538051223166285e-06) is less than the significance level (0.05), the researchers reject the null hypothesis. There is statistically significant evidence that the average blood pressure before and after treatment with the new drug is different.

## Python Implementation of Hypothesis Testing

Let’s create hypothesis testing with python, where we are testing whether a new drug affects blood pressure. For this example, we will use a paired T-test. We’ll use the scipy.stats library for the T-test.

Scipy is a mathematical library in Python that is mostly used for mathematical equations and computations.

We will implement our first real life problem via python,

In the above example, given the T-statistic of approximately -9 and an extremely small p-value, the results indicate a strong case to reject the null hypothesis at a significance level of 0.05.

- The results suggest that the new drug, treatment, or intervention has a significant effect on lowering blood pressure.
- The negative T-statistic indicates that the mean blood pressure after treatment is significantly lower than the assumed population mean before treatment.

## Case B : Cholesterol level in a population

Data: A sample of 25 individuals is taken, and their cholesterol levels are measured.

Cholesterol Levels (mg/dL): 205, 198, 210, 190, 215, 205, 200, 192, 198, 205, 198, 202, 208, 200, 205, 198, 205, 210, 192, 205, 198, 205, 210, 192, 205.

Populations Mean = 200

Population Standard Deviation (σ): 5 mg/dL(given for this problem)

## Step 1: Define the Hypothesis

- Null Hypothesis (H 0 ): The average cholesterol level in a population is 200 mg/dL.
- Alternate Hypothesis (H 1 ): The average cholesterol level in a population is different from 200 mg/dL.

As the direction of deviation is not given , we assume a two-tailed test, and based on a normal distribution table, the critical values for a significance level of 0.05 (two-tailed) can be calculated through the z-table and are approximately -1.96 and 1.96.

Step 4: Result

Since the absolute value of the test statistic (2.04) is greater than the critical value (1.96), we reject the null hypothesis. And conclude that, there is statistically significant evidence that the average cholesterol level in the population is different from 200 mg/dL

## Limitations of Hypothesis Testing

- Although a useful technique, hypothesis testing does not offer a comprehensive grasp of the topic being studied. Without fully reflecting the intricacy or whole context of the phenomena, it concentrates on certain hypotheses and statistical significance.
- The accuracy of hypothesis testing results is contingent on the quality of available data and the appropriateness of statistical methods used. Inaccurate data or poorly formulated hypotheses can lead to incorrect conclusions.
- Relying solely on hypothesis testing may cause analysts to overlook significant patterns or relationships in the data that are not captured by the specific hypotheses being tested. This limitation underscores the importance of complimenting hypothesis testing with other analytical approaches.

Hypothesis testing stands as a cornerstone in statistical analysis, enabling data scientists to navigate uncertainties and draw credible inferences from sample data. By systematically defining null and alternative hypotheses, choosing significance levels, and leveraging statistical tests, researchers can assess the validity of their assumptions. The article also elucidates the critical distinction between Type I and Type II errors, providing a comprehensive understanding of the nuanced decision-making process inherent in hypothesis testing. The real-life example of testing a new drug’s effect on blood pressure using a paired T-test showcases the practical application of these principles, underscoring the importance of statistical rigor in data-driven decision-making.

## Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. what are the 3 types of hypothesis test.

There are three types of hypothesis tests: right-tailed, left-tailed, and two-tailed. Right-tailed tests assess if a parameter is greater, left-tailed if lesser. Two-tailed tests check for non-directional differences, greater or lesser.

## 2.What are the 4 components of hypothesis testing?

Null Hypothesis ( ): No effect or difference exists. Alternative Hypothesis ( ): An effect or difference exists. Significance Level ( ): Risk of rejecting null hypothesis when it’s true (Type I error). Test Statistic: Numerical value representing observed evidence against null hypothesis.

## 3.What is hypothesis testing in ML?

Statistical method to evaluate the performance and validity of machine learning models. Tests specific hypotheses about model behavior, like whether features influence predictions or if a model generalizes well to unseen data.

## 4.What is the difference between Pytest and hypothesis in Python?

Pytest purposes general testing framework for Python code while Hypothesis is a Property-based testing framework for Python, focusing on generating test cases based on specified properties of the code.

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Hypothesis testing is a formal procedure for investigating our ideas about the world using statistics. It is most often used by scientists to test specific predictions, called hypotheses, that arise from theories. ... Stating results in a statistics assignment In our comparison of mean height between men and women we found an average difference ...

A statistical hypothesis is an assumption about a population parameter.. For example, we may assume that the mean height of a male in the U.S. is 70 inches. The assumption about the height is the statistical hypothesis and the true mean height of a male in the U.S. is the population parameter.. A hypothesis test is a formal statistical test we use to reject or fail to reject a statistical ...

Hypothesis testing is an act in statistics whereby an analyst tests an assumption regarding a population parameter. The methodology employed by the analyst depends on the nature of the data used ...

Test Statistic: z = ¯ x − μo σ / √n since it is calculated as part of the testing of the hypothesis. Definition 7.1.4. p - value: probability that the test statistic will take on more extreme values than the observed test statistic, given that the null hypothesis is true.

Hypothesis testing is a technique that is used to verify whether the results of an experiment are statistically significant. It involves the setting up of a null hypothesis and an alternate hypothesis. There are three types of tests that can be conducted under hypothesis testing - z test, t test, and chi square test.

S.3 Hypothesis Testing. In reviewing hypothesis tests, we start first with the general idea. Then, we keep returning to the basic procedures of hypothesis testing, each time adding a little more detail. The general idea of hypothesis testing involves: Making an initial assumption. Collecting evidence (data).

In hypothesis testing, the goal is to see if there is sufficient statistical evidence to reject a presumed null hypothesis in favor of a conjectured alternative hypothesis.The null hypothesis is usually denoted \(H_0\) while the alternative hypothesis is usually denoted \(H_1\). An hypothesis test is a statistical decision; the conclusion will either be to reject the null hypothesis in favor ...

Hypothesis testing. Hypothesis testing is a form of statistical inference that uses data from a sample to draw conclusions about a population parameter or a population probability distribution.First, a tentative assumption is made about the parameter or distribution. This assumption is called the null hypothesis and is denoted by H 0.An alternative hypothesis (denoted H a), which is the ...

Components of a Formal Hypothesis Test. The null hypothesis is a statement about the value of a population parameter, such as the population mean (µ) or the population proportion (p).It contains the condition of equality and is denoted as H 0 (H-naught).. H 0: µ = 157 or H0 : p = 0.37. The alternative hypothesis is the claim to be tested, the opposite of the null hypothesis.

A test of a statistical hypothesis, where the region of rejection is on both sides of the sampling distribution, is called a two-tailed test. For example, suppose the null hypothesis states that the mean is equal to 10. The alternative hypothesis would be that the mean is less than 10 or greater than 10.

A hypothesis test is a statistical inference method used to test the significance of a proposed (hypothesized) relation between population statistics (parameters) and their corresponding sample estimators. ... a hypothesis test, with significance level 0.05, to test if there is enough evidence to conclude that the population mean is larger than ...

Hypothesis testing is a statistical method used to determine if there is enough evidence in a sample data to draw conclusions about a population. It involves formulating two competing hypotheses, the null hypothesis (H0) and the alternative hypothesis (Ha), and then collecting data to assess the evidence.

An Independent Samples t-test compares the means for two groups. A Paired sample t-test compares means from the same group at different times (say, one year apart). A One sample t-test tests the mean of a single group against a known mean; Chi-Square Test. Chi-Square test is generally used when testing is related to categorical variables.

Mean Population IQ: 100. Step 1: Using the value of the mean population IQ, we establish the null hypothesis as 100. Step 2: State that the alternative hypothesis is greater than 100. Step 3: State the alpha level as 0.05 or 5%. Step 4: Find the rejection region area (given by your alpha level above) from the z-table.

Hypothesis testing, then, is a statistical means of testing an assumption stated in a hypothesis. While the specific methodology leveraged depends on the nature of the hypothesis and data available, hypothesis testing typically uses sample data to extrapolate insights about a larger population.

Hypothesis testing is based on making two different claims about a population parameter. The null hypothesis ( H 0) and the alternative hypothesis ( H 1) are the claims. The two claims needs to be mutually exclusive, meaning only one of them can be true. The alternative hypothesis is typically what we are trying to prove.

Significance tests give us a formal process for using sample data to evaluate the likelihood of some claim about a population value. Learn how to conduct significance tests and calculate p-values to see how likely a sample result is to occur by random chance. You'll also see how we use p-values to make conclusions about hypotheses.

Student's t-tests are commonly used in inferential statistics for testing a hypothesis on the basis of a difference between sample means. However, people often misinterpret the results of t-tests, which leads to false research findings and a lack of reproducibility of studies. This problem exists not only among students.

Hypothesis testing in statistics refers to analyzing an assumption about a population parameter. It is used to make an educated guess about an assumption using statistics. With the use of sample data, hypothesis testing makes an assumption about how true the assumption is for the entire population from where the sample is being taken.

We then determine the appropriate test statistic (Step 2) for the hypothesis test. The formula for the test statistic is given below. Test Statistic for Testing H0: p = p 0. if min (np 0 , n (1-p 0 )) > 5. The formula above is appropriate for large samples, defined when the smaller of np 0 and n (1-p 0) is at least 5.

The first set of hypotheses (Set 1) is an example of a two-tailed test, since an extreme value on either side of the sampling distribution would cause a researcher to reject the null hypothesis. The other two sets of hypotheses (Sets 2 and 3) are one-tailed tests, since an extreme value on only one side of the sampling distribution would cause a researcher to reject the null hypothesis.

Step 1. The assertion for which evidence must be provided is that the average online price μ is less than the average price in retail stores, so the hypothesis test is. H0: μ = 179 vs Ha: μ < 179 @ α = 0.05. Step 2. The sample is small and the population standard deviation is unknown.

Hypothesis testing is a statistical method that is used to make a statistical decision using experimental data. Hypothesis testing is basically an assumption that we make about a population parameter. It evaluates two mutually exclusive statements about a population to determine which statement is best supported by the sample data.

The standard deviation of the sheet thicknesses is known to be well approximated by = 0.2 𝝈 Thicknesses of each sheet in a sample of sheets will be measured, and a test of the hypothesis _ : ≤ v 𝑯 𝟎 𝝁 𝟒 will be performed. Assume that, in fact, the true mean thickness is 4.04 mm. a) If 100 sheets are sampled, what is the power ...