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Paired Comparisons


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Paired comparisons is a method of ranking items by comparing every item with every other item, taking them two at a time. Every time an item 'wins' a comparison it is given a point. The item with most points is the most important/favourite item.

For example, if you wanted to decide which was your favourite colour out of Red, Yellow, Blue and Green you would first compare Red with Yellow; then Red with blue and so on...

The following table gives a complete example:

 
PairRedYellowBlueGreen
Red – Yellow
1
   
Red – Blue  
1
 
Red – Green    
1
Yellow – Blue  
1
 
 
Yellow – Green    
1
Blue – Green  
1
 

Totals

1
0
3
2

In this case, Blue was the favourite colour, followed by Green, Red and finally Yellow.

The number of comparisons increases quite quickly with the number of items. The actual number of comparisons you have to make is given by the following formula (where n is the number of items):

n(n-1)
2

Our Paired Comparisons Program takes some of the effort out of the Paired Comparisons process.

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