Origin of correlation
- "There's not a direct correlation between poverty and violence and conflict and terrorism."-Barack Obama in Strasbourg Town Hall American Rhetoric (delivered April 3, 2009)
- "Researchers compute correlation coefficients when they want to know how two variables are related to each other."-Timothy C. Urdan Statistics in Plain English (2005)
- "By the expression ‘Correlation of the Organs,’ is understood the state of mutual dependence of the organs, after their division of labor has been brought about by the process of evolution; each has its own particular function to perform, but the fulfilment of this function is not sufficient for its existence, since rather it would be unable to perform its own function without the aid it derives from the other organs."-Thomas H. Montgomery, Jr. Organic Variation as a Criterion of Development Journal of Morphology, Vol. XII (1897)
- "From correlation of the rock sequences exposed at different localities, geologists can reconstruct a geologic history over a billion years long."-Frank Press, et. al Understanding Earth (2004)
Correlation has been in the English language since the 16th century. Its French cousin, corrélation, comes from Latin which literally means “restoring things together.” In English, we use it to describe a mutual relation between two things. Correlation is not to be confused with the word corollary, which is derived from an entirely different Latin root, corrollārium, a kind of ancient Roman gratuity, a “little something extra.”
In the 19th century, scholars of various disciplines adopted the term correlation to their specific areas of interest. In statistics, a correlation between two variables can be described as a numerical value. The words “positive,” “negative,” “strong,” and “direct” are often used as modifiers before correlation in this context. In the fields of biology and geology, researchers use correlation to help understand and describe various features of physiology and rock formations respectively. With the original meaning still in popular use, correlation is not just for mathematicians and scientists. Just be aware that if you casually mention correlation (in the general sense) to math enthusiasts, their initial responses might be to visualize a graph.
—Pearson correlation coefficient: a value between -1 and +1 that represents the relationship between two variables.
Examples from the Web for correlation
Darwin called the same phenomenon the “correlation of growth” and geneticist today study what they call “pleiotropic effects.”
As a designer, Gianni was completely aware of that correlation.Princess Diana, Kate Moss, Donna Karan, and More Reactions to Gianni Versace’s 1997 Murder|The Fashion Beast Team|July 15, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Past research hints at a correlation between extent of brain injury following impact and the biomechanical forces at play.This Mouthpiece Will Save Football Players’ Brains|Dr. Anand Veeravagu, MD|June 27, 2014|DAILY BEAST
The lack of correlation between saturated fat intake and heart disease risk still stands.
The correlation is especially robust in the lower grades, when students are in their formative years.How a 1973 Supreme Court Decision Has Contributed to Our Inequality|Geoffrey R. Stone|May 15, 2014|DAILY BEAST
We shall deal with the phenomenon of correlation at some length in the next chapter.The Making of Species|Douglas Dewar
Correlation is another of those laws which it pleases Darwin to consider as ultimate.
The secundo-primary qualities of bodies in correlation to it.
This is shown, he says, by the conservation of energy and the correlation of forces.The Universe a Vast Electric Organism|George Woodward Warder
Grove, Sir William, discoveries with regard to correlation of physical forces, 325.Social Transformations of the Victorian Age|T. H. S. (Thomas Hay Sweet) Escott