chapter  13
Basic Statistical Methods
Pages 44

The goal of applied statistics is to draw some conclusion about a population based on the

information contained in a sample from that population. The types of conclusions fall into

two general categories: estimates and inferences. Furthermore, the size and manner in

which a sample is drawn from a population affects the precision and accuracy of the

resulting estimates and inferences. These issues are addressed in the experimental

design of a sensory study. This chapter presents the concepts and techniques of estimation,

inference, and experimental design as they relate to some of the more fundamental statisti-

cal methods used in sensory evaluation. The topics are presented with a minimum of

theoretical detail. Those interested in pursuing this area further are encouraged to read

Gacula and Singh (1984), O’Mahony (1986), and Smith (1988) or, for more theoretically

advanced presentations, Cochran and Cox (1957) and Snedecor and Cochran (1980).