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Dealing with Random Phenomena A random phenomenon is a situation in which we know what outcomes could happen, but we don’t know which particular outcome did or will happen. When dealing with probability, we will be dealing with many random phenomena. Examples:: Die, Coin, Cards, Survey, Experiments, Data Collection, …

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Recall That… For any random phenomenon, each trial generates an outcome. An event is any set or collection of outcomes. The collection of all possible outcomes is called the sample space, denoted S.

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When outcomes are equally likely, probabilities for events are easy to find just by counting. {Classical Method} When the k possible outcomes are equally likely, each has a probability of 1/k. For any event A that is made up of equally likely outcomes,.

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CAUTION:: outcomes are equally likely?? Winning Lottery?? 50-50?? Rain Today?? Yes-No 50-50??

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The probability of an event as its long-run relative frequency. {Empirical Method} Frequency of Event ----------------------------------- # Repetitions of Experiment

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Personal Probability We use the language of probability in everyday speech to express a degree of uncertainty without basing it on long-run relative frequencies. Such probabilities are called subjective or personal probabilities. Personal probabilities don’t display the kind of consistency that we will need probabilities to have, so we’ll stick with formally defined probabilities.

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Probability Probabilities must be between 0 and 1, inclusive. –A probability of 0 indicates impossibility. –A probability of 1 indicates certainty.

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Probability “Something has to happen rule”: –The probability of the set of all possible outcomes of a trial must be 1. –P(S) = 1 (S represents set of all possible outcomes.)

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Probability Complement Rule: –Definition: The set of outcomes that are not in the event A is called the complement of A, denoted A C. –The probability of an event occurring is 1 minus the probability that it doesn’t occur. –P(A) = 1 – P(A C )

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Probability Addition Rule: –Definition: Events that have no outcomes in common (and, thus, cannot occur together) are called mutually exclusive. –For two mutually exclusive events A and B, the probability that one or the other occurs is the sum of the probabilities of the two events. –P(A or B) = P(A) + P(B), provided that A and B are mutually exclusive.

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Probability Multiplication Rule: –For two independent events A and B, the probability that both A and B occur is the product of the probabilities of the two events. –P(A and B) = P(A) x P(B), provided that A and B are independent.

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Putting the Rules to Work In most situations where we want to find a probability, we’ll use the rules in combination. A good thing to remember is that it can be easier to work with the complement of the event we’re really interested in.

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The General Addition Rule General Addition Rule: –For any two events A and B, P(A or B) = P(A) + P(B) – P(A and B). The following Venn diagram shows a situation in which we would use the general addition rule:

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A probability that takes into account a given condition is called a conditional probability. Example: Chance Diabetes If Male,… Example: Chance Die Is 2 If Even,… Example: …

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It Depends… To find the probability of the event B given the event A, we restrict our attention to the outcomes in A. We then find the fraction of those outcomes B that also occurred. Formally,. Note: P(A) cannot equal 0, since we know that A has occurred.

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Multiplication Rule When two events A and B are independent, we can use the multiplication rule for independent events P(A and B) = P(A) x P(B), provided that A and B are independent. However, when our events are not independent, this earlier multiplication rule does not work. Thus, we need the general multiplication rule.

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The General Multiplication Rule We’ve already encountered the general multiplication rule, but in the form of conditional probability. Rearranging the equation in the definition for conditional probability, we get: General Multiplication Rule: –For any two events A and B, P(A and B) = P(A) x P(B|A) or P(A and B) = P(B) x P(A|B).

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Independence Recall that when we talk about independence of two events, we mean that the outcome of one event does not influence the probability of the other. With our new notation for conditional probabilities, we can now formalize this definition. Events A and B are independent whenever P(B|A) = P(B). (Equivalently, events A and B are independent whenever P(A|B) = P(A).)

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Independent ≠ Mutually Exclusive Mutually Exclusive events cannot be independent. Well, why not? Since we know that Mutually Exclusive events have no outcomes in common, knowing that one occurred means the other didn’t. Thus, the probability of the second occurring changed based on our knowledge that the first occurred. It follows, then, that the two events are not independent.

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What Can Go Wrong? Beware of probabilities that don’t add up to 1. Don’t add probabilities of events if they’re not mutually exclusive. Don’t multiply probabilities of events if they’re not independent. Don’t confuse mutually exclusive and independent—mutually exclusive events can’t be independent.

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What Can Go Wrong? Don’t use a simple probability rule where a general rule is appropriate—don’t assume that two events are independent or disjoint without checking that they are.

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Copyright © 2007 Pearson Education, Inc. Publishing as Pearson Addison-Wesley Chapter 15 Probability Rules!

Copyright © 2007 Pearson Education, Inc. Publishing as Pearson Addison-Wesley Chapter 15 Probability Rules!

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