The p-value is an important statistical term in hypothesis testing.

This value is one of the indicators that help decide whether a null hypothesis being tested can be rejected or not.

In this tutorial we will show you two ways to get the p-value in Excel:

- Using the Excel T.TEST function
- Using Excel’s Data Analysis Toolpak

## What is the p-Value and How is it Used?

The p-value is commonly used in addition to other pre-selected confidence levels for hypothesis testing.

In simple words, the p-value is the probability for a null hypothesis (which is being tested) to be true. The ‘p’ is short for *‘probability’*.

This value gives us an idea of how statistically significant is the evidence relating to a given hypothesis.

The smaller the p-value, the greater is the evidence in support of rejecting the null hypotheses.

A* null hypothesis* is an initial claim about a population (or process that generates data). An *alternative hypothesis *states whether the actual observations differ from the assumed values (as stated in the null hypothesis).

The p-value is commonly used in hypothesis testing in fields like physics, chemistry, economics, finance, and more.

Since it is a probability value, it can be expressed either in the form of a decimal number or a percentage.

**A p-value of less than 0.05 is generally considered as an indication to reject the null hypotheses**. However, this cut-off point varies according to application.

## Two Ways to Get the p-Value in Excel

The calculation of the p-value can be quite complex when done manually.

The value is calculated from the deviation between the observed value and a chosen reference value, given the probability distribution of the statistic.

A bigger difference between the values is indicated by a lower p-value.

The calculation involves the application of integral calculus, which can get quite complex. So most of the time, statisticians refer to a table to obtain the p-value.

This table has been created based on an assumed or known probability distribution of the statistic being tested.

A p-table might not always be available to obtain the p-value.

So an easier way would be to use spreadsheet software like Microsoft Excel.

Let us look at two ways to get the p-value in Excel.

To demonstrate both methods, we will use the following data on scores obtained by students from two different classes:

Let’s say we want to see if there is any significant difference in the scores obtained by students between these two classes.

We are going to test the null hypothesis that *there is no significant difference in test scores between the two classes*.

For this, we will need to compute the p-value.

### Using the T.TEST Formula to Find the p-Value in Excel

A t-test is a statistic that can be used to determine if there is a significant difference between the means of two groups.

The T.TEST formula in Excel is used to perform a t-test and return the probability of a significant difference between two datasets, in other words, the p-value.

The formula also takes into account whether the data being used is a one-tail or two-tail distribution, as well as the kind of variance in the distribution.

The syntax for the T.TEST function is as follows:

T.TEST(array1,array2,tails,type)

Here,

*array1*is the range of cells corresponding to the first set of values*array2*is the range of cells corresponding to the second set of values*tails*is an integer that specifies the number of distribution tails. A value of 1 indicates a*one-tailed distribution*, while a value of 2 indicates a*two-tailed distribution*.*type*is an integer that specifies the type of t-Test that you want to perform. You will find in the table below the different integer values this parameter can have and what each value indicates.

Type value | Test being performed |

1 | Paired – this tests if the mean between paired sets is equal. |

2 | Two-sample equal variance- this tests if the variance of means between two sets is equal. |

3 | Two-sample unequal variance- this tests if the variance of means between two sets is unequal. |

To apply the T.TEST function to our dataset, we can use the following formula:

=T.TEST(A2:A8,B2:B8,2,1)

The above formula computes the p-value associated with a *paired *t-test for ranges A2:A8 and B2:B8, with a *two-tailed distribution*.

As can be seen from the screenshot below, the returned p-value is **0.259408.**

Since this is not less than α = .05, we fail to reject the null hypothesis of the test.

We do not have sufficient evidence to say that the mean height between the two species is different*.*

### Using the Data Analysis Toolpack to Find the p-Value in Excel

The T.TEST method is great if you only want to compute the p-value.

However, proper hypothesis testing involves computation of a number of other indicators too, like the Pearson’s coefficient, t-values, and more.

If you want to look at the bigger picture, so that you have more insight into the data distributions, then Excel’s *Data Analysis Toolpak* would be a better option.

The Analysis ToolPak is an Excel add-in that gives access to data analysis tools for financial, statistical, and engineering data analysis.

To use the *Data Analysis Toolpak*, you need to first upload it into Excel. For this follow the steps outlined below:

- Click on the
*File*tab.

- Select
*Options*from the menu items that appear.

- This will open the ‘
*Excel Options*’ window. Select*‘Add-ins*’ from the left sidebar of the window.

- In the dropdown box next to
*‘Manage’*(at the bottom of the window), make sure that the ‘*Excel Add-ins*’ option is selected.

- Click
*Go*. - This opens the ‘
*Add-ins*’ dialog window. - Make sure the box next to ‘
*Analysis ToolPak’*is checked.

- Click OK.

Your *Data Analysis Toolpak* should now be available as a menu item under *‘Analysis’ *in the *Data *tab.

Once your Analysis Toolpak is loaded you can analyze your data by the following steps:

- From the
*Data*tab, click on ‘*Data Analysis*’. - This opens the ‘
*Data Analysis*’ window. - Under ‘Analysis tools’ you will see a list of analysis tools available.

- Scroll down and select ‘
*t-Test: Paired Two Sample for Means*’. - Click OK.
- Another window will open that will let you select all the required inputs for the t-Test.
- Enter the inputs here as follows:

*Variable 1 Range*: Type in the cell reference for the range of cells that contain the first data set.*Variable 2 Range*: Type in the cell reference for the range of cells that contain the second data set.*Hypothesized Mean Difference*– Enter your hypothesized mean or leave it blank if you want.*Labels*– Check this box if you have labels included in your variable 1 and variable 2 ranges.*Alpha*– Enter your required alpha value or leave the default value of 0.05.*Output options*– Select where you want the results of the analysis to be displayed.

For our example, here are the inputs you can enter:

Note that we specified we want to display the result in a new tab by checking the radio button next to ‘*New Worksheet Ply’*.

Here are the results displayed based on our example data:

Notice that the p-value with the *two-tail test* is found to be **0.259408**, the same value that we obtained by the first method.

We found from the above data analysis that the p-value with the *one-tail test *is **0.129704**, and that with the* two-tail test* is **0.259408**.

Since the p-value obtained in both results are more than 0.05 we can go ahead and accept the null hypothesis that *there is no significant difference in the average scores of students between the two classes*.

In this tutorial, we showed you two ways to get the p-value in Excel. If you need to get a detailed analysis of your data, then the second method (using the* Data Analysis Toolpak*) is a good option.

However, if you are after just the p-value, then the first method (using the T.TEST function) should be enough.

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