Interval Estimation and Point Estimation (2012)

The problem with using a point estimate is that although it is the single best guess you can make about the value of a population parameter, it is also usually wrong. Interval estimate overcomes this problem using interval estimation technique which is based on point estimate and margin of error.

Interval Estimation

Advantages of Interval Estimation

  • A major advantage of using interval estimation is that you provide a range of values with a known probability of capturing the population parameter (e.g. if you obtain from SPSS a 95% confidence interval you can claim to have 95% confidence that it will include the true population parameter.
  • An interval estimate (i.e., confidence intervals) also helps one not to be so confident that the population value is exactly equal to the single-point estimate. That is, it makes us more careful in interpreting our data and helps keep us in proper perspective.
  • Perhaps the best thing of all to do is to provide both the point estimate and the interval estimate. For example, our best estimate of the population mean is the value of $32,640 (the point estimate) and our 95% confidence interval is $30,913.71 to $34,366.29.
  • By the way, note that the bigger your sample size, the more narrow the confidence interval will be.
  • Remember to include many participants in your research study if you want narrow (i.e., very precise) confidence intervals.

In essence, interval estimation is a game-changer in the field the statistics. Interval estimation, acknowledges the uncertainty inherent in data, providing a range of probable values (interval estimates) instead of a single (point estimate), potentially misleading, point estimate. By incorporating it into the statistical analysis, one can gain a more realistic understanding of the data and can make more informed decisions based on evidence, not just a single number.

Learn R Programming Language

Interval Estimation and Point Estimation

Leave a Comment

Discover more from Statistics for Data Analyst

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue reading