40 CFR Appendix IV to Part 265, Tests for Significance

Appendix IV to Part 265 - Tests for Significance

As required in § 265.93(b) the owner or operator must use the Student's t-test to determine statistically significant changes in the concentration or value of an indicator parameter in periodic ground-water samples when compared to the initial background concentration or value of that indicator parameter. The comparison must consider individually each of the wells in the monitoring system. For three of the indicator parameters (specific conductance, total organic carbon, and total organic halogen) a single-tailed Student's t-test must be used to test at the 0.01 level of significance for significant increases over background. The difference test for pH must be a two-tailed Student's t-test at the overall 0.01 level of significance.

The student's t-test involves calculation of the value of a t-statistic for each comparison of the mean (average) concentration or value (based on a minimum of four replicate measurements) of an indicator parameter with its initial background concentration or value. The calculated value of the t-statistic must then be compared to the value of the t-statistic found in a table for t-test of significance at the specified level of significance. A calculated value of t which exceeds the value of t found in the table indicates a statistically significant change in the concentration or value of the indicator parameter.

Formulae for calculation of the t-statistic and tables for t-test of significance can be found in most introductory statistics texts.