Logistic regression is a particular case of the generalized linear model, used to model dichotomous outcomes (probit and complementary log-log models are closely related).
The name comes from the link function used, the logit or log-odds function. The inverse function of the logit is called the logistic function and is given by:
This function takes a value between ]-Inf;+Inf[ and returns a value between 0 and 1; i.e the logistic function takes a linear predictor and returns a probability.
Logistic regression can be performed using the
glm function with the option
family = binomial (shortcut for
family = binomial(link="logit"); the logit being the default link function for the binomial family).
In this example, we try to predict the fate of the passengers aboard the RMS Titanic.
Read the data:
url <- "http://biostat.mc.vanderbilt.edu/wiki/pub/Main/DataSets/titanic.txt" titanic <- read.csv(file = url, stringsAsFactors = FALSE)
Clean the missing values:
In that case, we replace the missing values by an approximation, the average.
titanic$age[is.na(titanic$age)] <- mean(titanic$age, na.rm = TRUE)
Train the model:
titanic.train <- glm(survived ~ pclass + sex + age, family = binomial, data = titanic)
Summary of the model:
Call: glm(formula = survived ~ pclass + sex + age, family = binomial, data = titanic) Deviance Residuals: Min 1Q Median 3Q Max -2.6452 -0.6641 -0.3679 0.6123 2.5615 Coefficients: Estimate Std. Error z value Pr(>|z|) (Intercept) 3.552261 0.342188 10.381 < 2e-16 *** pclass2nd -1.170777 0.211559 -5.534 3.13e-08 *** pclass3rd -2.430672 0.195157 -12.455 < 2e-16 *** sexmale -2.463377 0.154587 -15.935 < 2e-16 *** age -0.042235 0.007415 -5.696 1.23e-08 *** --- Signif. codes: 0 ‘***’ 0.001 ‘**’ 0.01 ‘*’ 0.05 ‘.’ 0.1 ‘ ’ 1 (Dispersion parameter for binomial family taken to be 1) Null deviance: 1686.8 on 1312 degrees of freedom Residual deviance: 1165.7 on 1308 degrees of freedom AIC: 1175.7 Number of Fisher Scoring iterations: 5
The first thing displayed is the call. It is a reminder of the model and the options specified.
Next we see the deviance residuals, which are a measure of model fit. This part of output shows the distribution of the deviance residuals for individual cases used in the model.
The next part of the output shows the coefficients, their standard errors, the z-statistic (sometimes called a Wald z-statistic), and the associated p-values.
Iin the formula.
Below the table of coefficients are fit indices, including the null and deviance residuals and the Akaike Information Criterion (AIC), which can be used for comparing model performance.
Example of odds ratios:
exp(coef(titanic.train)) pclass3rd 0.08797765
With this model, compared to the first class, the 3rd class passengers have about a tenth of the odds of survival.
Example of confidence interval for the parameters:
confint(titanic.train) Waiting for profiling to be done... 2.5 % 97.5 % (Intercept) 2.89486872 4.23734280 pclass2nd -1.58986065 -0.75987230 pclass3rd -2.81987935 -2.05419500 sexmale -2.77180962 -2.16528316 age -0.05695894 -0.02786211
Exemple of calculating the significance of the overall model:
The test statistic is distributed chi-squared with degrees of freedom equal to the differences in degrees of freedom between the current and the null model (i.e., the number of predictor variables in the model).
with(titanic.train, pchisq(null.deviance - deviance, df.null - df.residual , lower.tail = FALSE))  1.892539e-111
The p-value is near 0, showing a strongly significant model.