The purpose of this tutorial is to help you learn what types of error can influence an experiment, how to represent random error, when and how to use "Student's" t test to test a hypothesis, and how to use a probability (p) value to represent the outcome of an experiment. Our objectives are limited, and neither the tutorial nor the companion articles are intended to replace a course in basic statistics. If you have little or no experience working with actual data you may first wish to peruse the companion articles listed below.
The instructions for conducting statistical analysis are based upon Microsoft Excel 2004 for Macintosh. Your experience with personal computers should enable you to work around inconsistencies with your version of Excel, which we hope is more recent. It is hoped that you will be able to use what you learn with any statistical software that you happen to have. This tutorial is intended to be a learning experience. Please try to answer the questions correctly. There is no penalty for incorrect answers, however. You may stop the tutorial and resume from the same point by bookmarking the current page when you break away.