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Re: Central tendency with categorical variables

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Mon, 27 Jun 2005 22:57:52 -0400

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 ```the short answer is yes, but..... 1) You must have the 'categorical' levels in what you can think of as an interval measurement scale. A Likert scale is one such - a rating of 4 is greater than 4, by the same amount that 2 is greater than 1. This means that the center of your Likert scale is not (no response) or (no opinion), but 'neutral.' And that the scale runs smoothly form 'strong disagree' to 'strong agree.' 2) the distribution of the measurements will _not_ be Normal, since the scale is bounded on each end. However, you can still calculate the average, the standard deviation,e tc., to your heart's content. Have a good trip. 3) An average of 3.6 then means that the average response fell part way between the 3 rating (neutral) and agree, or somewhat agree. If you have a hard time with that result, 3.6, then perhaps you are thinking that your Likert scale res;ponses are not on a continuous scale. If someone answers a question with an X half way between a 'neutral' - 3 and 'agree' - 4, how do you process this response? Do you throw it away, or do you record it as a 3.5? 4) I think you should accept this response as a nuanced response from your study person, and run with it. but that is because tend to respond in the middle of things, anyway. :) Cheers, Jay On Jun 27, 2005, at 5:57 AM, Omar Farook wrote: > Dear Friends. > > Good morning. > > > > Is it possible to use the Mean, Median and SD for the categorical > variable e.g. 1-5 Likert type scale. > > If yes, how can I interpret the mean if it was 3.6. > > > > Thanks in advance. > > Omar. > > [log in to unmask] > > > > --------------------------------- > Yahoo! Sports > Rekindle the Rivalries. Sign up for Fantasy Football > > > > Jay Warner Principal Scientist Warner Consulting, Inc. 4444 North Green Bay Road Racine, WI 53404-1216 USA Ph: 262.634.9100 FAX: 262.681.1133 email: [log in to unmask] web: www.a2q.com The A2Q Method(tm) --- What do you want to improve today? Jay Warner on the road, Working out of Racine, WI, USA through his .Mac account [log in to unmask] http://www.a2q.com Jay Warner Principal Scientist Warner Consulting, Inc. 4444 North Green Bay Road Racine, WI 53404-1216 USA Ph: 262.634.9100 FAX: 262.681.1133 email: [log in to unmask] web: www.a2q.com The A2Q Method(tm) --- What do you want to improve today? ```