The following notation is used in this section:

count (number of occurrences) in the ith group 

k 
number of groups 


number of occurrence opportunity units in the ith group 

N 
total sample size 


occurrence rate in the ith group () 


average of occurrence rates taken across groups. The quantity is computed as a weighted average:



significance level 


critical value for ANOM for normal data in the balanced case 


critical value for ANOM for normal data in the unbalanced case 
In an ANOM chart for rates, the central line represents the weighted average of the group rates, which is denoted by .
For the ith group, the occurrence counts are assumed to have a Poisson distribution with parameter . The ANOM method tests the null hypothesis that , that is, that the rates are the same, against the alternative that at least one of the ’s is different from the average of the k rates.
The decision limits are computed using the normal approximation to the Poisson distribution, which is appropriate when the sample sizes for the groups are large; see Ramig (1983). A commonly recommended check for this assumption is that for all the groups. The critical values in the ANOM method for normally distributed data are adapted to the Poisson case by using infinite degrees of freedom for the variance.
When the number of opportunity units is constant () across groups, the decision limits are computed as follow:






For the theoretical derivation of the decision limits, refer to Nelson (1982a).
When the number of opportunity units () is different across groups (the unbalanced case), the decision limits are computed as follows:






Note that the decision limits for the ith group depend on . If the sample sizes are constant across groups (), the decision limits in the unbalanced case reduce to the formulas given for the balanced case, since and , so

For the derivation of the decision limits for unequal sample sizes, refer to Nelson (1991).
Exact critical values were first tabulated by Nelson (1982a). Refer to Nelson (1993) for a derivation of the critical values and Nelson (1991) for a derivation of the critical values . Note that the critical values in the unequal sample size case have not been tabulated.
You can specify parameters for the limits as follows:
Specify with the ALPHA= option or with the variable _ALPHA_
in a LIMITS= data set.
Specify a nominal constant number of opportunity units with the LIMITN= option or with the variable _LIMITN_
in a LIMITS= data set.
Specify with the U= option or with the variable _U_
in a LIMITS= data set.