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A common question at this point is "Why is the numerator squared?" One answer is: to get rid of the negative signs. Numbers are going to fall above and below the mean and, since the variance is looking for distance, it would be counterproductive if those distances factored each other out.

Difference between population variance and sample variance

As seen a distinction is made between the variance, σ 2 , of a whole population and the variance, s 2 of a sample extracted from the population.

When dealing with the complete population the (population) variance is a constant, a parameter which helps to describe the population. When dealing with a sample from the population the (sample) variance varies from sample to sample. Its value is only of interest as an estimate for the population variance.

Properties of variance

The variance is never negative because the squares are always positive or zero. The unit of variance is the square of the unit of observation. For example, the variance of a set of heights measured in centimeters will be given in square centimeters. This fact is inconvenient and has motivated many statisticians to instead use the square root of the variance, known as the standard deviation, as a summary of dispersion.

Standard deviation

Since the variance is a squared quantity, it cannot be directly compared to the data values or the mean value of a data set. It is therefore more useful to have a quantity which is the square root of the variance. This quantity is known as the standard deviation.

In statistics, the standard deviation is the most common measure of statistical dispersion. Standard deviation measures how spread out the values in a data set are. More precisely, it is a measure of the average distance between the values of the data in the set and the mean. If the data values are all similar, then the standard deviation will be low (closer to zero). If the data values are highly variable, then the standard variation is high (further from zero).

The standard deviation is always a positive number and is always measured in the same units as the original data. For example, if the data are distance measurements in metres, the standard deviation will also be measured in metres.

Population standard deviation

Let the population consist of n elements { x 1 , x 2 , ... , x n } , with mean x ¯ . The standard deviation of the population, denoted by σ , is the square root of the average of the square of the distance of each data value from the mean value.

σ = ( x - x ¯ ) 2 n

Sample standard deviation

Let the sample consist of n elements { x 1 , x 2 , ... , x n } , taken from the population, with mean x ¯ . The standard deviation of the sample, denoted by s , is the square root of the average of the squared deviations from the sample mean:

s = ( x - x ¯ ) 2 n - 1

It is often useful to set your data out in a table so that you can apply the formulae easily. For example to calculate the standard deviation of { 57 ; 53 ; 58 ; 65 ; 48 ; 50 ; 66 ; 51 } , you could set it out in the following way:

x ¯ = sum of items number of items = x n = 448 8 = 56

Note: To get the deviations, subtract each number from the mean.

Questions & Answers

Application of nanotechnology in medicine
what is variations in raman spectra for nanomaterials
Jyoti Reply
I only see partial conversation and what's the question here!
Crow Reply
what about nanotechnology for water purification
RAW Reply
please someone correct me if I'm wrong but I think one can use nanoparticles, specially silver nanoparticles for water treatment.
yes that's correct
I think
what is the stm
Brian Reply
is there industrial application of fullrenes. What is the method to prepare fullrene on large scale.?
industrial application...? mmm I think on the medical side as drug carrier, but you should go deeper on your research, I may be wrong
How we are making nano material?
what is a peer
What is meant by 'nano scale'?
What is STMs full form?
scanning tunneling microscope
how nano science is used for hydrophobicity
Do u think that Graphene and Fullrene fiber can be used to make Air Plane body structure the lightest and strongest. Rafiq
what is differents between GO and RGO?
what is simplest way to understand the applications of nano robots used to detect the cancer affected cell of human body.? How this robot is carried to required site of body cell.? what will be the carrier material and how can be detected that correct delivery of drug is done Rafiq
analytical skills graphene is prepared to kill any type viruses .
what is Nano technology ?
Bob Reply
write examples of Nano molecule?
The nanotechnology is as new science, to scale nanometric
nanotechnology is the study, desing, synthesis, manipulation and application of materials and functional systems through control of matter at nanoscale
Is there any normative that regulates the use of silver nanoparticles?
Damian Reply
what king of growth are you checking .?
What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
anyone know any internet site where one can find nanotechnology papers?
Damian Reply
sciencedirect big data base
Introduction about quantum dots in nanotechnology
Praveena Reply
what does nano mean?
Anassong Reply
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
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Other chapter Q/A we can ask
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Source:  OpenStax, Siyavula textbooks: grade 11 maths. OpenStax CNX. Aug 03, 2011 Download for free at http://cnx.org/content/col11243/1.3
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