# st: The linguistics of -tabulate var1 var2, row-

 From "Renzo Comolli" To Subject st: The linguistics of -tabulate var1 var2, row- Date Sun, 21 Mar 2004 23:43:22 -0500

```Dears,
This is a minor linguistic point that I bring up only because it came up so
many time when people are reading my tables.
The question is conceptually so obvious that it is even difficult to explain
where the problem arises.
When you create a two-ways tabulation and you display it as percentage of
rows, of course it does not sum up to 100% by column, nonetheless it might
be human mental laziness that one someone sees the word "Total" than he or
she wants to see it sum up to 100%
See the example below in which the last line says "Total"

. use http://www.stata-press.com/data/r8/gss1991.dta
. tab region sex, row nofreq

region of |
the united |   respondent's sex
states |      male     female |     Total
-----------+----------------------+----------
north east |     41.60      58.40 |    100.00
south east |     42.82      57.18 |    100.00
west |     42.14      57.86 |    100.00
-----------+----------------------+----------
Total |     42.09      57.91 |    100.00

Perhaps it would be better if -tabulate- said "All" in the last row when the
option -,row- is selected.
e.g.

region of |
the united |   respondent's sex
states |      male     female |     Total
-----------+----------------------+----------
north east |     41.60      58.40 |    100.00
south east |     42.82      57.18 |    100.00
west |     42.14      57.86 |    100.00
-----------+----------------------+----------
All |     42.09      57.91 |    100.00

This point is very minor and it out more as a curiosum about peoples’ mind
than a suggestion for a change in the code.
Personally, I found useful to put my own description so I would write “U.S.”
in this example

Of course the same could be said for -tabulate var1 var2, column- but for
inscrutable reasons having to do with the human mind, people are not that
confused -, column- case

Best,
Renzo Comolli

*
*   For searches and help try:
*   http://www.stata.com/support/faqs/res/findit.html
*   http://www.stata.com/support/statalist/faq
*   http://www.ats.ucla.edu/stat/stata/
```