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Author: Nate Muckley

Learn the definitions and ways of calculating the mean, median, and mode of a set of numbers.

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Learning About Central Tendencies

Let's look at this set of numbers:

1, 4, 8, 8, 8, 6, 1, 3, 9

Now let's find the CENTRAL TENDENCIES, or in other words, ways of representing

the set of data with only 1 number.

There are three main ways of doing this.


Also called the average, the arithmetic mean is found by adding the numbers in the

set together, and then dividing that sum by the number of data points in the set.

1+4+8+8+8+6+1+3+9 = 48

(There are 9 numbers that we added together)

48 / 9 = 5.333


When you put the numbers in order of smallest to largest, the median is the middle number.

1, 1, 3, 4, 6, 8, 8, 8, 9

*If you have two middle numbers, like if you were to have 1, 2, 3, 4, than you would find the average of the middle two numbers. In this case, 2.5.


The mode is the number that appears the most amount of times

1, 1, 3, 4, 6, 8, 8, 8, 9


Now find the MEAN, MEDIAN, and MODE of this set of numbers

18, 12, 4, 17, 25, 6, 6, 7, 11, 1, 2

The answers are posted below.








More Examples.

Get out a pen and paper when you get to the YELLOW PROBLEM!

Questions and Answers

  • Answers 0
    Joe Tojek over 3 years ago

    Why would you choose to use one method over another?

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