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# What is a hypothesis and its characteristics?

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### What is the directional and non-directional hypothesis testing?

In statistical hypothesis testing you have a null hypothesis
against which you are testing an alternative. The hypothesis
concerns one or more characteristics of the distribution.
It is easier to illustrate the idea of directional and
non-directional hypothesis. In studying the academic abilities of
boys and girls the null hypothesis would be that boys and girls are
equally able. One directional hypothesis would be that boys are
more able. The non-directional alternative would be that there is a
gender difference. You have no idea whether boys are more able or
girls - only that they are not the same.

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