A positive or negative correlation sign is used to describe the direction in which the relationship goes. For a positive correlation, the variables X and Y change together in the same way. If the variable X increases, you can expect the variable Y to increase as well. A negative correlation is the opposite where X and Y change in different directions. If X increases, you can expect Y to decrease. One example the text provides of two variables that seem to be related but have nothing to do with each other is the number of crimes and churches in different cities. They do prove to have a correlation but one variable does not cause the other. Crime does not cause churches nor do churches cause crime. “Although there may be a causal relationship, the simple existence of a correlation does not prove it” (Gravetter et al., 2021, pg. 489).