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The what and why of statistics
Statistics can help provide concrete examples of a larger trend, give the basis for an important chart or graph, or make theoretical arguments tangible.
There are two main branches of statistics:
- Descriptive--concerns the numerical or quantitative data alone, and can help draw conclusions about a sample, rather than a population.
- Inferential--concerns the conclusions drawn about an entire population which are infered through the results of a random sampling of a population
Be aware of bias in statistics! Numbers can be manipulated, and charts and graphs can be arranged to give a certain impression. Always double-check your facts!
If you're looking for national crime statistics, these are some places to start your research. Consider visiting your state or city websites to look for more specific information.
- U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics
Statistics about: Crime and victims, Drugs and crime, Criminal offenders, The justice system in the United States, Law enforcement, Prosecution, Courts and sentencing, Corrections, Justice expenditure, and employment.
- Uniform Crime Reports (UCR)
Published by the FBI, includes statistics on crime in the United States, Hate Crimes, Law Enforcement officers killed and assaulted, etc.
Sourcebook of Criminal Justice Statistics (University of Albany)
Sourcebook of Criminal Justice Statistics - The Sourcebook contains statistics in the following areas: Criminal Justice Characteristics, Public Opinion, "Crime, Victims," "Arrests, Seizures," "Courts, Prosecution, Sentencing," and "Parole, Jails, Prisons, Death Penalty."
Bureau of International Labor Affairs (ILAB)
ILAB, a bureau in the U.S. Department of Labor promotes a fair global playing field for workers in the United States and around the world. This site provides reports and publications about international child labor & forced labor.
International Labour Organization
ILO is a specialized agency of the United Nations. This ILO website provides links to statistics
Polaris - Human Trafficking Facts
Polaris is a leader in the global fight to eradicate modern slavery. This site provides access to statistics from the National Human Trafficking Hotline and Polaris BeFree Textline.
World Health Organization - Global Health Observatory Data
The GHO is WHO's gateway to health-related statistics for more than 1000 indicators for its 194 Member States. Explore reports posted to the site or scroll down for access to the data repository.