Bag-of-words (BoW) is one of the most successful methods for object categorization. This paper proposes a statistical codeword selection algorithm where the best subset is selected from the initial codewords based on the statistical characteristics of codewords. For this purpose, we defined two types of codeword-confidences: cross- and within-category confidences. The cross- and within-category confidences eliminate indistinctive codewords across categories and inconsistent codewords within each category, respectively. An informative subset of codewords is then selected based on these two codeword-confidences. The experimental evaluation for a scene categorization dataset and a Caltech-101 dataset shows that the proposed method improves the categorization performance up to 10% in terms of error rate reduction when cooperated with BoW, sparse coding (SC), and locality-constrained liner coding (LLC). Furthermore, the codeword size is reduced by 50% leading a low computational complexity.