Do you have to run a correlation analysis before running a multiple regression?


New Member
Is it a prerequisite that you must do a correlation analysis before doing a hierarchical multiple linear regression? I am short of words (only 2,500) for a paper so I was wondering if I needed to include a correlation analysis when I'm really interested in the regression.



Less is more. Stay pure. Stay poor.
Model building should be based on context knowledge, so you shouldn't run correlations or report them. Correlations can miss confounding, collider bias, mediation, and reverse causality.
Last edited:


TS Contributor
If you look back to the days before computers or even calculators existed, it made sense to do a correlation to screen variables before the more rigorous math required for regression. Today, it would be redundant.


No cake for spunky
Here is why you don't do this.

(this is real not made up)

Ice Cream Sales -> murder rates. If you did correlation analysis you might believe the lizards are adding drugs to ice scream.

In reality Hot weather -> murder rates and Hot Weather -> ice cream sales.