Difference Between Statistic and Parameter Explained

Statistic and parameter are terms used in statistical analyses. They are quite similar as they describe a group. This could be any description such as ‘40% of the students prefer to opt for science’. The main Difference between Statistic and Parameter is that parameter describes a population while statistics tell about a sample. Both of these things play a role in determining sample size and trend in the population.

Statistic: Definition and Use.

Statistic refers to a numerical value which you get from a sample. You observe the sample and then describe it. Sample refers to a small portion of the population which is representative of the whole population. Another Difference between Statistic and Parameter is that statistic is a variable and is known while the parameter is an unknown numerical value that is fixed.

For example, if you go to a classroom and ask everyone if they like cake. This will give you a parameter because you have included the whole population.

On the other hand, if you take a group of 10 students and ask them if they like cake, you will get a statistic. From this information, you will be able to get an idea about the trend in the whole population. In larger populations, the statistic is often used because of it hard and sometimes impossible to get information from the whole population.

For example, asking the whole country’s population about the choice for a national flower. An example of the statistic is 50% of the US residents agreeing on the latest bill passed. Since it is not possible to ask the whole country about their opinion, statistic experts take a sample and the view of those sample individuals reflect the view of the entire country.

Parameter: Definition and Use.

A parameter is a characteristic that is based on the whole population. Population refers to all people sharing the same characteristics, in a given area. The numerical value obtained as a parameter is fixed because you have asked every member of the population. Parameter gives true value since everyone has surveyed.

A Difference between Statistic and Parameter is that in statistic measurement, you have a sample mean, while in parameter measurement, you calculate the population means. Similar, sample and population standard deviation is measured respectively.

For statistic, the size of the sample is denoted by ‘n’ and for the parameter, the size of the population is denoted by ‘N’. In a smaller population, the parameter is used because it is easier to ask everyone about their opinion.

For example, in a class of 30 students, you can ask everyone about their favorite fast food. However, if you include the whole school, with 5,000 students, you will have to take a sample.

Summary of Difference between Statistic and Parameter:

  • The major Difference between Statistic and Parameter is that statistic deals with a sample while the parameter is a measure of the whole population.
  • The statistic is calculated for larger populations where it is harder to include everyone while the parameter is suitable for smaller populations.
  • A Difference between Statistic and Parameter is that the numerical value of the statistic is variable and known while that of the parameter is fixed and unknown.

Leave a Comment