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Configural Frequency Analysis: the Search for Extreme Cells

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Configural Frequency Analysis (CFA) asks whether a cell in a cross-classification contains more or fewer cases than expected with respect to some base model. This base model is specified such that cells with more cases than expected (also called types) can be interpreted from a substantive perspective. The same applies to cells with fewer cases than expected (antitypes). This article gives an introduction to both frequentist and Bayesian approaches to CFA. Specification of base models, testing, and protection are discussed. In an example, Prediction CFA and two-sample CFA are illustrated. The discussion focuses on the differences between CFA and modelling.
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Keywords: Bayesian CFA; Configural frequency analysis (CFA); Dirichlet distribution; antitypes; base models; contingency table; extreme cells; frequentist CFA; protection; types

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Michigan State University, USA 2: Autonomous National University of Mexico

Publication date: October 1, 2004

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