# What does "correlation vs causation" mean in statistics?

##### 1 Answer

Jan 22, 2018

Correlation: two variables tend to vary together. For a positive correlation, if one variable increases, the other also increases in the given data.

Causation: one variable causes the changes in another variable.

Significant difference: Correlation could just be a coincidence. Or maybe some third variable is changing the two.

For example: There is correlation between "going to sleep wearing shoes" and "waking up with a headache". But this relation is not causal, because the real reason for this coincidence is (too much) alcohol.