Maximum Likelihood Estimation

Maximum likelihood estimation (MLE) is one of the most commonly used estimation methods. Some features that prediction methods should have are efficiency, unbiasedness, and minimum variance. The method of maximum likelihood (ML) has all of these features and is a very reliable estimator. MLE is also the basis of many statistical methods. In some cases, the likelihood function is mathematically difficult to compute. Nevertheless, parameters that are suitable for many distributions can be estimated with the MLE. This entry discusses general aspects of MLE as well as the ML estimators and their properties.

General Aspects of MLE

MLE was developed by R. A. Fisher in the 1920s. Its main aim is to make observed data most likely, that is, to maximize the likelihood function. MLE has an ...

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