ANCOVA (Analysis of covariance) is a general linear model which blends ANOVA and regression. ANCOVA evaluates whether population means of a dependent variable (DV) are equal across levels of a categorical independent variable (IV) often called a treatment, while statistically controlling for the effects of other continuous variables that are not of primary interest, known as covariates (CV) or nuisance variables. Mathematically, ANCOVA decomposes the variance in the DV into variance explained by the CV(s), variance explained by the categorical IV, and residual variance. Intuitively, ANCOVA can be thought of as ‘adjusting’ the DV by the group means of the CV(s). ANCOVA can be used to increase statistical power (the ability to find a significant difference between groups when one exists) by reducing the within-group error variance. In order to understand this, it is necessary to understand the test used to evaluate differences between groups, the F-test. The F-test is computed by dividing the explained variance between groups (e.g., gender difference) by the unexplained variance within the groups. Another use of ANCOVA is to adjust for pre-existing differences in non-equivalent groups. This application aims at correcting for initial group differences that exists on DV among several intact groups.

Was the above useful? Please share with others on social media.

If you want to look for more information, check some free online courses available at coursera.org, edx.org or udemy.com.

Recommended reading list:

Data Science from Scratch: First Principles with Python Data science libraries, frameworks, modules, and toolkits are great for doing data science, but they’re also a good way to dive into the discipline without actually understanding data science. In this book, you’ll learn how many of the most fundamental data science tools and algorithms work by implementing them from scratch. If you have an aptitude for mathematics and some programming skills, author Joel Grus will help you get comfortable with the math and statistics at the core of data science, and with hacking skills you need to get started as a data scientist. Today’s messy glut of data holds answers to questions no one’s even thought to ask. This book provides you with the know-how to dig those answers out. Get a crash course in Python Learn the basics of linear algebra, statistics, and probability—and understand how and when they're used in data science Collect, explore, clean, munge, and manipulate data Dive into the fundamentals of machine learning Implement models such as k-nearest Neighbors, Naive Bayes, linear and logistic regression, decision trees, neural networks, and clustering Explore recommender systems, natural language processing, network analysis, MapReduce, and databases |