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Provisional  (PROVISIONAL)

Data are called provisional1 if they are based on incomplete or insufficiently controlled observations. They are replaced by final2 data when the observations are complete. Rates based on such data are called provisional rates3 and final rates4 respectively. Where unexpected information becomes available after figures have already been published, revised rates5 may be issued. The expression corrected rate6 usually implies that defective data or inappropriate methods have yielded results which are either misleading or of limited value for the purpose in hand and that an effort has been made to correct this, e. g. correction for under-enumeration, correction for migration, correction for seasonal movement. Standardized rates7 or adjusted rates7 are designed to make it possible to compare different populations with respect to a variable, e. g. fertility or mortality, where the influence of another variable e. g. age, is held constant. The term corrected rate7 has been used by some demographers as a synonym for standardized rate. Unstandardized rates are called crude rates8. Although they may be used to measure actual trends, false inferences may result from their uncritical use when populations with different structures (144-4) are compared.
(It should be emphasized that there is no uniformly accepted terminology for the subjects mentioned in this paragraph and that the terms are often used rather loosely.)