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Unless otherwise stated, the material in this guide is from The Learning Centre at Centennial College.  Content has been adapted for the NWP Learning Commons in March 2022. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons BY 4.0 International License.

Introduction to Statistics

The field of statistics is the science of learning from data. Statistical knowledge helps you use the proper methods to collect data, employ the correct analyses, and effectively present the results. Statistics is a crucial process behind how we make discoveries in science, make decisions based on data, and make predictions. Statistics allows you to understand a subject much more deeply.

There are two main reasons why studying the field of statistics is crucial in modern society. First, statisticians are guides for learning from data and navigating common problems that can lead to incorrect conclusions. Second, given the growing importance of decisions and opinions based on data, it’s crucial that you can critically assess the quality of analysis that others present to you.

Illustration of a bell curve to symbolize the importance of statistics.

Statistics is an exciting field about the thrill of discovery, learning, and challenging your assumptions. Statistics facilitates the creation of new knowledge. Bit by bit, we push back the frontier of what is known.