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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Finding Statistics

How and where to find statistics on a variety of topics.

Getting started

Starting Points

If you're not sure what kind of statistic you need, or what subject area your research falls under, or if you just need some general statistics, try one of these fantastic resources.

Remember that Data is different from Statistics. Data is the raw information and statistics are created using data, thus statistics provides the interpretation of data. Keep this in mind as you look through the resources so that you can use the materials accurately. 

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!

Can't find what you're looking for?

Try resources on the web: 100+ of the Best Free Data Sources For Your Next Project 

Contact your subject specialists or our Statistics Librarian for additional assistance.