Statistics for Environmental Engineers

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The normal and lognormal distributions have been used often because we have faith in these familiar models and it is not easy to verify any other true distribution for a small sample (n = 20 to 50), which is the size of many data sets. Hahn and Shapiro (1967) showed this graphically and Shumway et al. (1989) have shown it using simulated data sets. They have also shown that when we are unsure of the correct distribution, making the log transformation is usually beneficial or, at worst, harmless.


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