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INDEPENDENT VARIABLE

Statistics Directorate    
French Equivalent: Variable indépendante

Definition:
This term is regularly used in contradistinction to “dependent variable” in regression analysis. When a variate y is expressed as a function of variables x1, x2, …………, plus a stochastic term the x’s are known as “independent variables”.

Context:
The terminology is rather unfortunate since the concepts has no connection with either mathematical or statistical dependence. Modern usage prefers “explanatory variable”, “predicated variable” or, best of all, “regressor”.

Source Publication:
A Dictionary of Statistical Terms, 5th edition, prepared for the International Statistical Institute by F.H.C. Marriott. Published for the International Statistical Institute by Longman Scientific and Technical.

Statistical Theme: Methodological information (metadata)

Created on Sunday, May 19, 2002

Last updated on Tuesday, April 29, 2003