Scale of measurement

· Variables are always coded using numeric values, but values have different functions.

· Nominal: values are used for differentiation only. Race, gender, marital status, etc.

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· Ordinal: ranking order of values is meaningful. Life satisfaction, level of support, etc.

· Interval: distance between values is meaningful. HDI, IQ, temperature, etc.

· Ratio: true zero, i.e., 0 means “none”. Income in dollars, number of children, etc.

· Usually, we call both interval and ratio variables continuous variables.

· Why important? It determines what technique to use.




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