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# NON-PARAMETRIC METHODS

NON-PARAMETRIC METHODS
Most of the hypothesis-testing procedures
discussed so far, such as Z-test or f-test, are on
the assumption that the random samples are
selected from a normal population. We have
seen that most of these tests are still reasonably
reliable for slight departures from normality,
particularly, when the sample size is large.
Traditionally, these testing procedures have been
known as Parametric methods as they depend on
the parameters, viz., mean or proportion or
standard deviation etc. These parametric tests
have used the parametric statistic of sample that
comes from the population being tested.
NON-PARAMETRIC METHODS
The need for technique that apply more broadly has
led to the development of nonparametric methods.
These do not require the assumption that the
underlying population is normal or indeed that
they have any single mathematical form and some
even apply to non-numerical data. The non-
parametric methods are also called distribution-
free methods that assume no knowledge, what so
ever, about the distributions of underlying
populations, except perhaps that they are
continuous.
NON-PARAMETRIC METHODS
The need for technique that apply more broadly has
led to the development of nonparametric methods.
These do not require the assumption that the
underlying population is normal or indeed that
they have any single mathematical form and some
even apply to non-numerical data. The non-
parametric methods are also called distribution-
free methods that assume no knowledge, what so
ever, about the distributions of underlying
populations, except perhaps that they are
continuous.
1.Simple: Non-parametric tests are generally simple to
understand, quicker and easier to apply when the sample
sizes are small.
2. Less Time Consuming: They do not require lengthy and
laborious calculations and hence they are less time
consuming. If significant results are obtained no further
work is necessary.
3. Distribution Free: They do not require the assumption
that a population is distributed in the shape of a normal
curve or another specified shape.
4. Suitable for Ranked Data : Non-parametric data can be
used comfortably where the data has been given in rank or
on numerical data has the strength
of rank. For example, if the researcher just has the information
about preference of consumer for different brands of air
conditioners and he has no idea about how much more he
prefers A to B. For such a situation nonparametric tests are
ideal.
5. Versatility(Applicability) : Non-parametric tests can be used
for all kinds of data, regardless of distribution i.e. the population
may be normal or non-normal, qualitative or quantitative. In
other words has better applicability due to
milder(soft)assumptions.
6. Nominal data : Non-parametric tests can be used to treat
data which is simply classificatory or categorical i.e. nominal
data.
7. Small sample size : In certain situations the sample size is
small. For example, a medical researcher conducting research
on a rare disease may have very few sample case studies or a
pilot study being conducted by a researcher. In such situations
there is no alternative but to use nonparametric test unless the
nature of the population distribution is exactly known.
Distribution-free or non-parametric methods also
have a number of important disadvantages which in
1. lack of sensitivity: Non-parametric tests sometimes
sensitivity .
2. Less powerful : As stated earlier the nonparametric
tests are not based on much assumptions, which makes
them less powerful than parametric tests because the
less that one assumes the less he infers from the data.
3. Always preferred over non-parametric tests : If the
data is such that it meets all the desired assumptions,
or it is in interval or ratio scale, there will always be a
tendency to use parametric tests over most parametric
tests.
4. Not suitable for large samples : When the size of
the sample is large then nonparametric tests are
avoided since these involve labourious calculations.
Although with the advent of contemporary
computer application this problem has been solved.
5. Lack of tables : In order to arrive at significant
decisions, critical values are required. However
some of these values have yet not been compiled in
relevant tables.
SIGNIFICANCE/USES OF NON-PARAMETRIC METHODS
There are four situations in which the use of a
distribution-free or non-parametric technique is
indicated:
1. When quick or preliminary data analysis is
needed. May be you just want to see roughly how
things are going with the data. May be somebody is
about to leave for Atlantic City to present a paper
tomorrow, and his or her chief thought it would be
a nice idea to include some statistics in the paper.
Significance/USES OF NON-PARAMETRIC METHODS
2.When the assumptions of a competing
distribution-tied or parametric procedure are not
satisfied and the consequences of this are either
unknown or known to be serious. They can be put
to use.
3. When data are only roughly scaled: for example,
when only comparative rather than absolute
magnitudes are available In dealing with clinical
data, perhaps patients can only be classified as
better, unchanged, or worse. Perhaps only ranks,
that is, largest, second largest,..... . smallest, are
available.
USES OF NON-PARAMETRIC METHODS
4. When the basic question of interest is
distribution-free or non-parametric in nature. For
example, do we have a random samples, or are
these two samples drawn from populations with
identical distributions?
TYPES OF NON -PARAMETRIC TESTS
A large number of non parametric tests exist, but we
shall discuss the following tests which are better known
and widely used ones:
1. Sign test for paired data and One Sample Sign Test.
In these tests, positive or negative signs are substituted
for quantitative values.
2. Mann-Whitney U Test or a Rank Sum Test. This test
is used to determine whether two independent
samples have been drawn from the same population.
3. Kruskal-Wallis Test. It is another rank sum test which
generalizes the analysis of variance to enable us to
dispense with the assumption that the population are
normally distributed.
4. One Sample Run Test. It is a method to determine
the random ness with which the sample items have
been selected.
TYPES OF NON -PARAMETRIC TESTS
5. Rank Correlation Test. It is a method for finding
correlation coefficient when the data available is not in
numerical form but the information is sufficient to rank
the data first, second, third, and so on.
6. Kolmogorov-Smirnov Test. It is another method of
determining the goodness of fit between an observed
and theoretical probability distributions.
7. Kendal Test of Concordance. This test is applicable to
situations where we want to test the significance of
more than two sets of rankings of individuals.
8. Median Test for Two Independent Samples.
9. Wilcoxon Signed-Rank Test.