The Beta distribution is a continuous probability distribution with parameters α and β, which are usually used as shape parameters. It is defined on the interval [0,1] and is often used in Bayesian statistics, to model random variables that have a limited range. In addition, it’s useful for modeling proportions or percentages.
In this comprehensive guide, we will take you through a step-by-step process of how to plot a Beta distribution in R, a popular programming language widely used in data analysis and statistics. This will include generating beta distributed data, plotting the probability density function (PDF), cumulative distribution function (CDF), and creating a histogram with a density line.
Step 1: Basic Plotting of Beta Distribution
R has built-in functions for the Beta distribution:
dbeta(x, shape1, shape2, ncp, log = FALSE): Returns the density.
pbeta(q, shape1, shape2, ncp, lower.tail = TRUE, log.p = FALSE): Returns the distribution function.
qbeta(p, shape1, shape2, ncp, lower.tail = TRUE, log.p = FALSE): Returns the quantile function.
rbeta(n, shape1, shape2, ncp): Generates random deviates.
shape2 are α and β parameters of the Beta distribution, respectively.
ncp is non-centrality parameter.
First, let’s look at how you can plot the density function of the Beta distribution. We will use the
curve() function in R, which draws a curve corresponding to a function over an interval.
# Setting up the parameters alpha <- 2 beta <- 5 # Plotting the beta density curve(dbeta(x, alpha, beta), from=0, to=1, ylab="Density", xlab="x", main=paste("Density of Beta(", alpha, ",", beta, ")"))
In this code, we define the parameters of our Beta distribution (
beta), then use the
curve() function to draw a curve of the Beta distribution’s density function from 0 to 1. The
dbeta() function returns the density of the Beta distribution for different values of
main options in the
curve() function are used to set the y-axis label, x-axis label, and the plot title, respectively.
Step 2: Plotting the Cumulative Distribution Function (CDF)
The cumulative distribution function (CDF) of a random variable is defined as the probability that the variable takes a value less than or equal to a certain value.
The Beta distribution’s CDF can be plotted in a similar way to the PDF, using the
# Plotting the cumulative distribution function curve(pbeta(x, alpha, beta), from=0, to=1, ylab="CDF", xlab="x", main=paste("CDF of Beta(", alpha, ",", beta, ")"))
pbeta() is the function that provides the cumulative distribution function of the Beta distribution.
Step 3: Generating Beta-Distributed Random Numbers
To generate beta-distributed random numbers, we use the
rbeta() function. For example, let’s generate 10000 random numbers from the Beta distribution with parameters α=2 and β=5:
# Generate beta-distributed random numbers set.seed(123) # for reproducible results beta_random <- rbeta(10000, alpha, beta)
Step 4: Creating a Histogram with a Density Line
After generating beta-distributed random numbers, we can create a histogram to observe the distribution of these numbers:
# Create a histogram hist(beta_random, prob=TRUE, breaks=40, main="Histogram with density line", xlab="x", ylab="Density") # Add a density line lines(density(beta_random), col="red", lwd=2)
In the code above, the
hist() function creates a histogram, and the
lines() function adds a density line. The
prob=TRUE argument in the
hist() function means that the histogram will represent probabilities instead of counts. The
breaks=40 argument sets the number of bins in the histogram.
density() function estimates the density function from the data, and
lines() adds this estimated density to the plot.
Step 5: Overlaying the Theoretical Density
Finally, you might want to compare the histogram and the estimated density with the theoretical density of the Beta distribution:
# Overlay the theoretical density curve(dbeta(x, alpha, beta), add=TRUE, col="blue", lwd=2)
curve() function here adds the theoretical density to the existing plot because of the
In this guide, you’ve learned how to generate and plot a Beta distribution in R, including how to generate beta-distributed random numbers, plot the probability density function and cumulative distribution function, create a histogram, and overlay the theoretical and estimated densities. With this knowledge, you should be well-equipped to work with Beta distributions in R.
Remember, the shapes of the Beta distribution can vary widely depending on the values of α and β parameters. Therefore, when using the Beta distribution in practice, be sure to choose these parameters carefully based on the characteristics of your specific data and analysis.