Discriminant analysis is a multivariate statistical technique that can be used to predict group membership from a set of predictor variables. The goal of discriminant analysis is to find optimal combinations of predictor variables, called discriminant functions, to maximally separate previously defined groups and make the best possible predictions about group membership. Discriminant analysis has become a valuable tool in social sciences as discriminant functions provide a means to classify a case into the group that it mostly resembles and help investigators understand the nature of differences between groups. For example, a college admissions officer might be interested in predicting whether an applicant, if admitted, is more likely to succeed (graduate from the college) or fail (drop out or fail) based on a set of ...
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