In one way anova, does the one refer to the independent variable or dependent variable? For example I have three groups: Group A (Music Therapy) Group B (Cognitive therapy) and Group C (no therapy) dependent variable is stress scores

Does the one way refer to the stress scores (dependent variable) or to the therapies of which there are 3?

Please explain

Many thanks Shindy

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    $\begingroup$ What's wrong with the Wikipedia description of One-way analysis of variance (see the third paragraph)? The 'many'-way refer to the number of categorical (independent) variables; otherwise, we talk of multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) when there are multiple response (dependent) variables. $\endgroup$
    – chl
    Dec 1, 2016 at 21:01

1 Answer 1


"One way" means the groups are categorized in one way. For your example: one of three therapies. Three therapies, but only one grouping variable "therapy". SO one-way.

The best way to understand is to extend...

If you also tracked (and wanted to analyze) gender, then you'd have two-way ANOVA, as the groups are categorized in two ways: Therapy and gender. Every individual would be categorized in two ways, which therapy they got, and which gender.

If you also tracked old and young separately, then you'd use three-way ANOVA because there would be three grouping variables: therapy, gender and age group. Every individual would be categorized in three ways, which therapy, which gender and which age group.

  • $\begingroup$ To have your question answered by @HarveyMotulsky is a treat. $\endgroup$
    – user140401
    Dec 1, 2016 at 22:34

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