How to Report a Chi-Square Test Result (APA)

The APA requirements for citing statistical test results are quite precise, so you need to pay attention to the basic format, and also to the placing of brackets, punctuation, italics, and the like.

This is the basic format for reporting a chi-square test result (where the color red means you substitute in the appropriate value from your study).

X2 (degress of freedom, N = sample size) = chi-square statistic value, p = p value.


Imagine we conducted a study that looked at whether there is a link between gender and the ability to swim. We might report the results like this:

A chi-square test of independence was performed to examine the relation between gender and the ability to swim. The relation between these variables was significant, X2 (1, N = 84) = 8.9, p = .0029. Women were more likely than men to be able to swim.

Other Examples

The proportion of subjects who reported being depressed did not differ by marriage, X2 (1, N = 104) = 1.7, p > .05.

There is a significant relationship between the two variables. Hipsters are more likely than non-hipsters to own an IPhone, X2 (1, N = 54) = 6.7, p < .01.

A chi-square test of independence showed that there was no significant association between gender and chocolate preference, X2 (2, N = 88) = 2.1, p = .35.


Some things to look out for:

1. There are two ways to cite p values. The first way is to report the alpha value as in a couple of the examples above. The second way, very much the preferred way in the age of computer aided calculations (and the way recommended by the APA), is to report the exact p value (as in our main example). If you report the exact p value, then you need to state your alpha level early in your results section. The other thing to note here is that if your p value is less than .001, it's conventional simply to state p < .001, rather than give the exact value.

2. The calculated chi-square statistic should be stated at two decimal places.

3. P values don't have a leading 0 - i.e., not 0.05, just .05.

4. Remember to restate your hypothesis in your results section before detailing your result.

5. Don't be afraid to include a crosstabs table if you think it'll make your results clearer.

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