PSY521_Week7 - Part A The Importance of Descriptive...

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Part A. The Importance of Descriptive Statistics The average or the mean of the student’s scores is 39.14. Calculating the mean is the best way to find the ordinary average. The average is not necessarily the same as the majority, either, which is measured by figuring out the mode. This is important to remember. The mean is a measure of central tendency of a group of scores. The mean is found by calculating the sum of all of the numbers; in this case it would be all of the student’s scores, and then dividing them by the number of scores. However, there are circumstances in which the mean is not the best measure of central tendency. This would be one of those circumstances. As you can see from the chart below, there is one very high number. This is considered an outlier. An outlier is a score with an extreme value in relation to all of the other scores. If you will look at the chart, you can see that there is 1 score of 100. This will heavily influence the mean. In these cases, the median is usually used because the extreme score affects the outcome less than the other methods. The median is found by lining up the scores from the lowest to the highest and the number in the middle is the median.
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