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random error

error that is due to chance alone. Random errors are nonsystematic and occur arbitrarily when unknown or uncontrolled factors affect the variable being measured or the process of measurement. Such errors are generally assumed to form a normal distribution around a true score. Also called variable error. See also absolute error; constant error. Compare systematic error.

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Psychology term of the day

May 21st 2024



n. the state of having an abnormally low body temperature. It can be caused by absence of normal reflexes such as shivering, sometimes associated with disease or a disorder of the brain, or by exposure to extreme cold. Accidental hypothermia is most likely to affect older people, who are less able to cope with the cooling effect of environmental temperatures in the winter months. Symptoms include listlessness, drowsiness, apathy, and indifference to progressive frostbite, progressing (if untreated) to coma and death. See also induced hypothermia. —hypothermic adj.