statistical inference(redirected from Inferential statistics)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus, Medical, Encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
A statistical method of drawing conclusions on unknown properties of a population based on a random sampling of data from that population.
Copyright © 2012, Campbell R. Harvey. All Rights Reserved.
statistical inferencea process by which we infer conclusions about a statistical POPULATION from which only a SAMPLE has been drawn. For example, if one million Britons buy bicycles each year, and 200 are asked why they do so, 50% may say because it helps to keep them fit. From this sample one may infer that 50% of the total population of one million Britons buying bicycles do so for this reason. However, it is not possible to say with 100% accuracy that this is the case unless the views of all one million were obtained. Nevertheless, it is possible to say with reasonable confidence that the estimation of 50% is correct for the whole population.
Collins Dictionary of Business, 3rd ed. © 2002, 2005 C Pass, B Lowes, A Pendleton, L Chadwick, D O’Reilly and M Afferson