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    When do you use mean or median? And when does it not matter?

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    What is the mean number of legs a person has?
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    (Original post by vdub)
    What is the mean number of legs a person has?
    In theory just under 2 (if you include everyone in the world)...what does this have to do with my question? or does it have something to do with whether or not you include extreme values?
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    Median if data is skewed, positive/negatively skewed
    Mean if not skewed-symmetrical
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    In that case the mode would be best. It's much more efficient to say a person has 2 legs than say 1.999. Income it is good to use the median, so extremely rich people don't give the impression that the average person earns 50k or whatever
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    (Original post by matt_copas)
    And when does it not matter?

    Thanks
    When the data is normally distributed.

    Mean=median=mode.

    Have a look at this,

    http://uk.answers.yahoo.com/question...2061807AADuoyv

    Might give you some idea when should you use what.
 
 
 
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Updated: January 16, 2010
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