Horrible statistical nomenclature and the aptly titled ‘Confusion Matrix’

Type 1 errors, type 2 errors, sensitivity, specificity, etc. As any undergrad knows statistical nomenclature can give you a headache. I still see experts in the field get confused over what is the difference between a false positive rate and a false discovery rate. I’m here to tell you, don’t worry, it’s not your fault, we all struggle to remember these horribly named statistics.


Thankfully some heroes put together this comprehensive confusion matrix on Wikipedia for us all to use. I have simply mimicked their layout in a spreadsheet with all the formulas which you can grab and use as your own.

Hover over the cells to see the cell description in the comment box and, if you’re like me, reference this every time you need to compute these statistics just to be sure!


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