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Mar 13, 2012 by daniel
Difference between Observation and Inference
Observation is the practice of collecting data, while inference is basically making sense of collected data. Whereas observation is a description of the situation, inference is a detailed explanation of collected data. Observation usually refers to watching this around carefully and inference is a conclusion that is got from observation. This means you can only infer once you have made an observation.
Observation is the close examination of the environment using the senses. It is the basis for inference and it provides the materials used to infer. Observation differs from one person to the next. In general, it is influenced by the attitude, knowledge and experience of the observer. Good observation is only possible once you pay close attention to your surroundings. The better the observation, the more effective the inference will be.
Inference is entirely based on observation. It is a conclusion drawn from keen observation. It is termed like a conclusion drawn from keen observation. Inference is basically the interpretation of things that have been observed. However, one can only make a true inference when there is adequate evidence or data. Inference can assist in evaluating several circumstances and also making informed decisions.
Inference is a theory based on observation. Hence, inference and observation are interlinked and they cannot stand alone. Inference cannot be achieved if there is inadequate observation. Furthermore, after observation, the information should be analyzed and inference occurs.
Observation can be easily done by any person and it requires less skill. You only have to be keen and look out for major changes based on what you are supposed to be observing. In contrast, inference requires some level of skill to be able to create a theory based on collected data. Only skilled people can determine the true meaning of collected results and help provide theories for dealing with the situation.
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