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Normalizing Data

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Edited by: Published: 2010
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Researchers often want to compare scores or sets of scores obtained on different scales. For example, how do we compare a score of 85 in a cooking contest with a score of 100 on an IQ test? To do so, we need to “eliminate” the unit of measurement; this operation means to normalize the data. There are two main types of normalization. The first type of normalization originates from linear algebra and treats the data as a vector in a multidimensional space. In this context, to normalize the data is to transform the data vector into a new vector whose norm (i.e., length) is equal to one. The second type of normalization originates from statistics and eliminates the unit of measurement by transforming the data ...

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