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Variance Function In Excel

Updated on May 31, 2011

How To Calculate Variance In Excel

Microsoft Excel is a very powerful tool if you know how to use it well. In this guide we will go through how to calculate a very important statistical function known as Variance. If you are not very statistically savvy, Variance is a popular method of assessing how far various values are from the mean (or average) of a dataset.

There are four types of Excel Variances:

  1. Excel Variance of a sample using the VAR function.
  2. Excel Variance of a sample using the VARA function.
  3. Excel Variance of a population using the VARP function.
  4. Excel Variance of a population using VARPA function.

Be wary when calculating variances for samples and populations; you can get different results for each.

Excel Variance
Excel Variance

Excel Variance Using VAR Statistical Function

You would use the Excel Variance function, VAR, if your dataset is a sample and you do not want to have any logical values/text in the calculation.

In Excel 2007, on the ribbon, click Formulas, click More Functions, choose Statistical, cick VAR.

The typed function looks like this:

=VAR (data range)

Excel Variance Using VARA Function

You would use the Excel Variance function, VARA, if your dataset is a sample and you want to have logical values/text in the calculation. Excel will assume the logical value of TRUE as a numeric value of 1 and the logical value of FALSE and a numeric value of 0.

In Excel 2007, on the ribbon, click Formulas, click More Functions, choose Statistical, cick VARA.

The typed function looks like this:

=VARA (data range)

Excel Variance Using VARP

You would use the Excel Variance function, VARP, if your dataset is a population and you do not want to have any logical values/text in the calculation.

In Excel 2007, on the ribbon, click Formulas, click More Functions, choose Statistical, cick VARP.

The typed function looks like this:

=VARP (data range)

Excel Variance Using VARPA

You would use the Excel Variance function, VARPA, if your dataset is a population and you have logical values/text in the calculation. Excel will assume the logical value of TRUE as a numeric value of 1 and the logical value of FALSE and a numeric value of 0.

In Excel 2007, on the ribbon, click Formulas, click More Functions, choose Statistical, cick VARPA.

The typed function looks like this:

=VARPA (data range)

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