Dictionary > Dependent variable

Dependent variable

Definition
noun, plural: dependent variables
(mathematical modeling) The variable in a functional relation whose value is dependent upon, or influenced by, an independent variable
(experimental sciences, statistics) The variable whose value is measured to determine the extent of the effect of another variable to it, as in an experiment; a factor whose value changes when the independent variable is changed
Supplement
The dependent variable, as the name implies, is the variable that depends and therefore affected by certain variables, in particular, by the independent variable(s). In comparison, the independent variable is the variable that determines the value of the variable dependent on it. In experimental sciences, the independent variable is the factor being manipulated or controlled by an experimenter and then the value of the dependent variable is measured. The value of the dependent variable would represent the extent of the effect of the independent variable. For example, an experiment is designed to see if a newly developed drug is effective in treating patients with cough. Some of the patients were given the drug while others the placebo. To determine if the drug is effective, the recovery of patients taking the drug is monitored and compared against that of the patients taking the placebo. If the patients taking the drug are able to recover faster than the patients taking the placebo, it could mean that the drug is effective against cough. If patients taking the drug and the placebo have the same rate of recovery, the drug may not be an effective treatment for cough.
In this case, the dependent variable is the rate of recovery in patients with cough.
Synonym(s):

  • experimental variable
  • explained variable
  • outcome variable
  • measured variable
  • observed variable
  • output variable
  • regressand
  • responding variable
  • response variable

Compare:

  • independent variable


    You will also like...

    human brain structure
    The Conscious & Unconscious Nervous System

    This tutorial elaborates on how the nervous system works, particularly at the tissue level of the brain. There are three..

    Homeostatic Mechanisms and Cellular Communication
    Homeostatic Mechanisms and Cellular Communication

    Homeostasis is the relatively stable conditions of the internal environment that result from compensatory regulatory res..

    Cell structure
    Cell Structure

    A typical eukaryotic cell is comprised of cytoplasm with different organelles, such as nucleus, endoplasmic reticulum, G..

    primitive arthropods
    Arthropods

    The arthropods were assumed to be the first taxon of species to possess jointed limbs and exoskeleton, exhibit more adva..

    Cambial cells
    Plant Tissues

    Plant organs are comprised of tissues working together for a common function. The different types of plant tissues are m..

    Homeostasis by water regulation
    Homeostasis of Organism Water Regulation

    Osmoregulation is the regulation of water concentrations in the bloodstream, effectively controlling the amount of water..