Intro to Hypothesis Testing. March 2012. Geometry Warm-Up. There is a maximum of one obtuse angle in a triangle, but can you prove it? To prove something like this, we mathematicians must do a proof by contradiction. We play devil’s advocate and assume the alternative is true.
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1. H0: The “Null Hypothesis.” This is where you play devil’s advocate. To illustrate that there is a statistical difference between two sets of data, you want this hypothesis to be incorrect.
2. HA: The “Alternative Hypothesis.” This is sometimes called the claim. This is what you are attempting to show to be true. You must decide if you are doing a one- or two-tailed test (more on that in a minute). We base this decision on what we are interested in learning about the situation, the “Why” of the study. We do not base this on what we believe the results will show us.