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Fundamental Statistics for the Social and Behavioral Sciences

Fundamental Statistics for the Social and Behavioral Sciences

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© 2016 | 816 pages | SAGE Publications, Inc
This thematically-based textbook places statistics within the research process, illustrating how statistics are used to answer questions and test ideas. Students learn not only how to calculate statistics, but also how to interpret the results of statistical analyses in light of a study’s research hypothesis and to communicate their results and interpretations to a broader audience. Featuring accessible writing and well-integrated research examples, the book is designed to help readers develop an appreciation of how statistics are applied to topics and questions of interest, gain an appreciation of issues related to the use of statistics, and enhance their understanding of the research process and the role of statistics within it.

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Chapter 1: Introduction to Statistics
1.1 What Is Statistics?  
1.2 Why Learn Statistics?  
1.3 Introduction to the Stages of the Research Process  
1.4 Plan of the Book  
Chapter 2: Examining Data: Tables and Figures
2.1 An Example From the Research: Winning the Lottery  
2.2 Why Examine Data?  
2.3 Examining Data Using Tables  
2.4 Grouped Frequency Distribution Tables  
2.5 Examining Data Using Figures  
2.6 Examining Data: Describing Distributions  
Chapter 3: Measures of Central Tendency
3.1 An Example From the Research: The 10% Myth  
3.2 Understanding Central Tendency  
3.3 The Mode  
3.4 The Median  
3.5 The Mean  
3.6 Comparison of the Mode, Median, and Mean  
3.7 Measures of Central Tendency: Drawing Conclusions  
Chapter 4: Measures of Variability
4.1 An Example From the Research: How Many “Sometimes” in an “Always”?  
4.2 Understanding Variability  
4.3 The Range  
4.4 The Interquartile Range  
4.5 The Variance (s2)  
4.6 The Standard Deviation (s)  
4.7 Measures of Variability for Populations  
4.8 Measures of Variability: Drawing Conclusions  
Chapter 5: Normal Distributions
5.1 Example: SAT Scores  
5.2 Normal Distributions  
5.3 The Standard Normal Distribution  
5.4 Applying z-Scores to Normal Distributions  
5.5 Standardizing Frequency Distributions  
Chapter 6: Probability and Introduction to Hypothesis Testing
6.1 A Brief Introduction to Probability  
6.2 Example: Making Heads or Tails of the Super Bowl  
6.3 Introduction to Hypothesis Testing  
6.4 Issues Related to Hypothesis Testing: An Introduction  
Chapter 7: Testing One Sample Mean
7.1 An Example From the Research: Do You Read Me?  
7.2 The Sampling Distribution of the Mean  
7.3 Inferential Statistics: Testing One Sample Mean (s Known)  
7.4 A Second Example From the Research: Unique Invulnerability  
7.5 Introduction to the t-Distribution  
7.6 Inferential Statistics: Testing One Sample Mean (s Not Known)  
7.7 Factors Affecting the Decision About the Null Hypothesis  
Chapter 8: Estimating the Mean of a Population
8.1 An Example From the Research: Salary Survey  
8.2 Introduction to the Confidence Interval for the Mean  
8.3 The Confidence Interval for the Mean (s Not Known)  
8.4 The Confidence Interval for the Mean (s Known)  
8.5 Factors Affecting the Width of the Confidence Interval for the Mean  
8.6 Interval Estimation and Hypothesis Testing  
Chapter 9: Testing the Difference Between Two Means
9.1 An Example From the Research: You Can Just Wait  
9.2 The Sampling Distribution of the Difference  
9.3 Inferential Statistics: Testing the Difference Between Two Sample Means  
9.4 Inferential Statistics: Testing the Difference Between Two Sample Means (Unequal Sample Sizes)  
9.5 Inferential Statistics: Testing the Difference Between Paired Means  
Chapter 10: Errors in Hypothesis Testing, Statistical Power, and Effect Size
10.1 Hypothesis Testing vs. Criminal Trials  
10.2 An Example From the Research: Truth or Consequences  
10.3 Two Errors in Hypothesis Testing: Type I and Type II Error  
10.4 Controlling Type I and Type II Error  
10.5 Measures of Effect Size  
Chapter 11: One-Way Analysis of Variance (ANOVA)
11.1 An Example From the Research: It’s Your Move  
11.2 Introduction to Analysis of Variance (ANOVA)  
11.3 Inferential Statistics: One-Way Analysis of Variance (ANOVA)  
11.4 A Second Example: The Parking Lot Study Revisited  
11.5 Analytical Comparisons Within the One-Way ANOVA  
Chapter 12: Two-Way Analysis of Variance (ANOVA)
12.1 An Example From the Research: Vote—or Else!  
12.2 Introduction to Factorial Research Designs  
12.3 The Two-Factor (A × B) Research Design  
12.4 Introduction to Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) for the Two-Factor Research Design  
12.5 Inferential Statistics: Two-Way Analysis of Variance (ANOVA)  
12.6 Investigating a Significant A × B Interaction Effect: Analysis of Simple Effects  
Chapter 13: Correlation and Linear Regression
13.1 An Example From the Research: Snap Judgment  
13.2 Introduction to the Concept of Correlation  
13.3 Inferential Statistics: Pearson Correlation Coefficient  
13.4 Predicting One Variable From Another: Linear Regression  
13.5 Correlating Two Sets of Ranks: The Spearman Rank-Order Correlation  
13.6 Correlational Statistics vs. Correlational Research  
Chapter 14: Chi-Square
14.1 An Example From the Research (One Categorical Variable): Are You My Type?  
14.2 Introduction to the Chi-Square Statistic  
14.3 Inferential Statistic: Chi-Square Goodness-of-Fit Test  
14.4 An Example From the Research (Two Categorical Variables): Seeing Red  
14.5 Inferential Statistic: Chi-Square Test of Independence  
14.6 Parametric and Nonparametric Statistical Tests  


Instructor Resource Site

SAGE edge for Instructors, supports teaching by making it easy to integrate quality content and create a rich learning environment for students.

  • Test banks provide a diverse range of pre-written options as well as the opportunity to edit any question and/or insert personalized questions to effectively assess students’ progress and understanding
  • Sample course syllabi for semester and quarter courses provide suggested models for structuring one’s course
  • Editable, chapter-specific PowerPoint® slides offer complete flexibility for creating a multimedia presentation for the course
  • Lecture notes ease preparation for lectures and class discussions
  • The Instructor Teaching Site includes SPSS data sets for exercises in the book.
  • Web and multimedia resources are included for further research and insights.

Student Study Site

SAGE edge for Students provides a personalized approach to help students accomplish their coursework goals in an easy-to-use learning environment.

  • Mobile-friendly eFlashcards strengthen understanding of key terms and concepts
  • Mobile-friendly practice quizzes allow for independent assessment by students of their mastery of course material
  • A  customized online action plan includes tips and feedback on progress through the course and materials, which allows students to individualize their learning experience
  • Learning objectives reinforce the most important material
  • Web and multimedia resources are included for further insights.
  • SPSS data files for exercises in the book are provided on the open-access student study site.

"This textbook is very well written. It is very easy to read and is easy to follow the material presented. There are a lot of good practical examples that students can easily relate to. It seems that there are more exercise problems at the end of each chapter compared to other textbooks, which is a big plus."

Hideki Morooka, Fayetteville State University

“I like that it [Fundamental Statistics for the Social and Behavioral Sciences] incorporates SPSS examples in each relevant chapter and gives a detailed description of how each formula is done, what the steps to each analysis is, and applying it to a real life problem...The book lays out the formulas step by step. Most students in my experience have a problem with formulas when you move beyond the simple calculation of the mean. I think that the formulas are well laid out with a step-by-step guide on how to calculate each with the appropriate explanation of each step and the final product of the equation.” 

Shelly A. McGrath, University of Alabama at Birmingham

This is an excellent statistics textbook - there are many features that make this a very valuable tool. It has an overview of basis mathematics at the end, useful for those whose last maths session is some time ago. It also includes a range of useful tables, lots of exercises, learning checks with answers and detailed instructions on how to use SPSS for each section. Altogether a very useful book.

Dr Antje Cockrill
School of Business, University of Wales, Trinity St David
December 2, 2016

Clear explanations without too much "fluff" (in contrast to the Field books).

Dr Stefanie A Wind
College Of Education, University Of Alabama
September 7, 2015

This textbook provides a thorough introduction to the topics at the foundation of data analysis. It is well written and well structured. It is useful for revising the basics, or when one is looking for alternative explanations of statistical phenomena. I recommend it to my students as a complementary source.

Dr Anna Shirokanova
School of the Social Sciences, National Research University Higher School of Economics
August 26, 2015

The text is much easier to read than other texts and it gives a lot of detail without seeming overwhelming. I also like that it shows the computational formula for standard deviation and variance.

Although I do wish it went a little bit further and added a chapter on multiple regression. Even if it primarily focused on adding 1 extra variable. I would also like confidence intervals for proportions in addition to the mean.

Mr Robert Gomez
Sociology Dept, California St Univ-Fullerton
July 2, 2015

A good book.
There are a lot of books on stats, and this is a good one - it is well set out and easy to use.
This said, as there are a number to choose from we found others better suited to our students.

Mr Gavin Brown
Business School, Dublin City University (DCU)
June 14, 2015

This text will be a FABULOUS resource for our entering doctoral students who are beginning to explore various quantitative analyses for use exploring their emerging research questions. I will regularly refer it as a resource.

However, my course is a more general review of research design (epistemology, theory, writing research questions, questions as the driver for choosing methods, etc.) so I will not be adopting this title as a required text.

Dr Tami Moore
School Of Educational Studies, Oklahoma State University
May 1, 2015

Recommended for additional reading

Dr Olu A Awosoga
Addictions Counselling, University Of Lethbridge
February 12, 2015

It's written in a language that's much more accessible than other books I've reviewed. It also covers all of the essential topics I cover in my class. I just wish it included an intro to multiple and logistic regression.

Mr Robert James Gomez
Sociology Dept, California St Univ-Fullerton
August 22, 2014
Key features


  • Published research articles that cover a wide variety of areas of study and address real-world issues and topics illustrate the use of statistical procedures to test research questions and hypotheses.
  • Explicit and thorough presentation of formulas and calculations help students master key techniques and is especially helpful to students in flipped or online classes.
  • Periodic learning checks in every chapter give students an opportunity to continually assess their understanding.
  • Illustrations of statistical calculations using IBM® SPSS® Statistics help students learn to use SPSS software and interpret output.
  • Coverage of how to present data in visual form (bar charts, line graphs, scatterplots, etc.) is included for every statistical procedure.
  • Numerous end-of-chapter exercises give faculty flexibility in assigning homework.

Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter 1

Chapter 4

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