Q:

# What does interval mean in math?

A:

In mathematics, the term "interval" usually refers to a statistical confidence interval. Confidence intervals describe the likelihood of a statistical estimate being correct. Higher confidence intervals mean better chances that the estimate is correct, while lower confidence intervals mean better chances that the estimate is incorrect or flawed.

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Credit: wonderferret CC-BY 2.0

To calculate a confidence interval, the researcher needs to have three pieces of information: the confidence level, the statistic and the margin of error. The confidence level is usually given as a percentage (e.g. 90 percent), and the statistic is usually given as a sample mean, while the margin of error is calculated by multiplying critical value by standard deviation or standard error. With this information, the confidence interval can be calculated using a sample statistic plus or minus margin of error.

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