ASQ - Statistics Division

Understanding Data Differences Equals Making Better Decisions – September 2011 Webinar

Abstract: Information consists of differences that make a difference." This basic, introductory webinar uses everyday data from real life to discern which differences matter: how to detect them, how to interpret them, and how to use them for process improvement. Series or groups of data differences (or fluctuations) are together called "variation." Participants will understand what variation is, why and how it occurs, and how to present it so that it may be measured, analyzed, and interpreted properly - not only for reporting results and improving process performance and outcomes, but also for raising staff morale and job satisfaction.

Topics covered: variation (what is it, why and how does it occur), histograms, measures of location and dispersion, accuracy vs. precision, common vs. special causes, statistical process control charts for variables and attribute data, risks vs. consequences of 3-sigma control limits, the danger of setting goals, dealing with various sources of variation, costs of ignorance and benefits of knowledge, sampling frequency, and sensitivity vs. specificity.

Keywords: Control charts - Control limits - Histogram - I and MR chart - Shewhart chart - Special cause - Common cause - Statistical process control - Variability

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