Encyclopedia of Public Health

2008 Edition
| Editors: Wilhelm Kirch


Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4020-5614-7_2974


A relationship is a connection between two or more variables usually assessed by a measure of association. Informally a term that describes a case where one variable is depending on the other, or a case where values of one variable vary together with values of the other variable(s). The relationships may be causal, meaning that the changes in one variable depend on the changes in another; or they may be correlational, meaning that the variables tend to change at the same time, but there is not necessarily a causal relationship between the two variables. A relationship between two variables that can be described by a straight line when variable values are plotted on a graph is a linear relationship.


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© Springer-Verlag 2008