Department of Animal Science



Date of this Version



Published in 2011 Nebraska Beef Cattle Report. Published by the Agricultural Research Division, University of Nebraska Extension, Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Copyright © 2011 The Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska.


The purpose of beef cattle and beef product research at UNL is to provide reference information that represents the various populations (cows, calves, heifers, feeders, carcasses, retail products, etc.) of beef production. Obviously, researchers cannot apply treatments to every member of a population; therefore, they must sample the population. The use of statistics allows researchers and readers of the Nebraska Beef Report the opportunity to evaluate separation of random (chance) occurrences and real biological effects of a treatment. Following is a brief description of the major statistics used in the beef report. For a more detailed description of the expectations of authors and parameters used in animal science, see Journal of Animal Science Style and Form (beginning pp. 339) at