You need to be able to tell the difference between quantitative and qualitative data in order to execute your statistical analyses correctly. Statistical programs like SPSS ask you to identify your dependent variable, covariate or test variables. These need to be identified from your data set. Usually, these are your quantitative data.
The term quantitative data represent various observations or measurements that are numerical. Some examples include:
* Weight and Height
* Standardized test scores
* Number of days in the hospital
The term qualitative data refers to observations that are descriptive. These data represent categories. Some examples include:
* Marital Status
* Geographic Locale
Some of the statistically procedures like SPSS also require you to specify a grouping variable or factor. You need to be able to identify this from your data set. Usually, these are you qualitative data.
Selecting the correct measurement scales for variables, and identifying which ones you use for different statistical procedures are absolutely the most significant steps in setting up data warehouses.
Remember the adage. Garbage in; garbage out!