2
$\begingroup$

How can I interpret point-biserial correlation? If the results give me a positive and significant correlation, how should I interpret it? Should I say that the variable category that I coded 1 is positively correlated with the outcome variable?

$\endgroup$

1 Answer 1

2
$\begingroup$

For the most part, you can interpret the point-biserial correlation as you would a normal correlation. I wouldn't quite say "the variable category that I coded 1 is positively correlated with the outcome variable", though, because the correlation is a relationship that exists between both levels of the categorical variable and all values of the continuous one. Instead, if the correlation is positive, I would say that means moving from the $0$ category to the $1$ category is associated with an increase in $Y$, and/or higher $Y$ values tend to co-occur with category $1$. A negative correlation would be the opposite of that. The fact that the correlation is significant implies that you are unlikely to find a correlation (i.e., $\hat r_{p.b.}$) that far (or further) from $\hat r_{p.b.} = 0$, if there were actually no relationship.

$\endgroup$

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.