Mean, Median And Mode

When we use the word "average", we could mean the mean, the median or the mode because these are all "averages" or more correctly, measures of central tendency.

Mean - Add up all the data scores and then divide by the number of scores there are.

Median - Write all the scores from smallest to largest and then choose the score in the middle.

Mode - This is the most frequent score (or most often score).


Example One - Odd Number of Raw Data

Alligator

The population numbers of alligators in 7 national parks is below. Calculate the mean, the median and the mode.
Data - 14, 13, 8, 19, 13, 24, 15

Answer:

Mean= (14 + 13 + 8 + 19 + 13 + 24 + 15) ÷ 7
= 106 ÷ 7
= 15.1 alligators

Ordered Data - 8, 13, 13, 14, 15, 19, 24
Median (middle score in ordered data) = 14 alligators

Mode (most often score) = 13 alligators


Example Two - Even Number of Raw Data

Wall Graffiti

The number of graffiti convictions for 12 months of monthy data is below. Calculate the mean, the median and the mode.
Data - 14, 25, 23, 15, 16, 16, 11, 23, 12, 13, 24, 7

Answer:

Mean= (14 + 25 + 23 + 15 + 16 + 16 + 11 + 23 + 12 + 13 + 24 + 7) ÷ 12
= 199 ÷ 12
= 16.6 convictions

Ordered Data - 7, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 16, 23, 23, 24, 25
Median (middle score in ordered data)= halfway between 15 and 16
= (15 + 16) ÷ 2
= 15.5 convictions

Mode = 16 and 23
There are two modes. The data is bimodal.


Example Three - Effect of an Outlier on the Mean

An outlier is a score which is considerably different from the rest of the data. (For example, one of your classmates may have over 1000 Facebook "Friends"!!) Since the outlier will skew the data analysis, the outlier is often left out. However, in this example, we will include it to show you the skewing effect of the outlier on the mean.

The number of Facebook "Friends" is below. Calculate the mean, the median and the mode.
Data - 12, 15, 3, 10, 25, 1000, 12

Answer:

Mean= (12 + 15 + 3 + 10 + 25 + 1000 + 12) ÷ 7
= 1077 ÷ 7
= 153.9 Friends!!

Ordered Data - 3, 10, 12, 12, 15, 25, 1000
Median = 12 Friends

Mode = 12 Friends

Maths Fun - Mean, Median & Mode

The mean, median and mode are all equal for the set of numbers [ 3, 4, 5, 8, X ]. What is the value of X?

Questions - Find the Mean, Median & Mode

Q1. Numbers of hot dogs eaten by contestants in a ten-minute competition - 63, 15, 10, 12, 23

Q2. Liver organ transplant survival times (years) - 16, 15, 23, 25, 28, 12, 12, 18

Answers

A1. Mean = 24.6Median = 15Mode = no mode
A2. Mean = 18.6Median = 17Mode =12

Using Organized Data

In statistics, the data is usually so large that it must be organized into tables with extra columns. The rules to calculate the mean and the median are adapted to suit this tabular format.

Mean of Organized Data
Mean =fx(where Sigma ∑ means "the sum of")
f

Median of Organized Data
The median score is halfway through the data scores so the median is identified using the rule:

( ∑ f + 1 )
2

where
f is the the sum of the frequencies. Refer to the examples below.


Example Four - Organized Data

Car Crash

Calculate the mean, the median and the mode from this road accident fatalities data:

AGE (YEARS)NUMBER OF DEATHS
165
178
1820
1927

Answer:

AGE (YEARS)
x
NUMBER OF DEATHS
f

f x
16516 × 5 = 80
17817 × 8 = 136
182518 × 25 = 450
192719 × 27 = 513
f = 65fx = 1179

Mean = fx = 1179 = 18.14 years
f65
Median score = (∑ f + 1) = (65 + 1)= 33rd score = 18 years
22

(The data has already been ordered from smallest to largest in the table.
Count down the frequency column to find the 33rd score.
The 33rd person is in the row for the 18 years' age group.)

Mode = 19 years

Did You Know That...?

According to the Guinness World Records, an American woman, Lee Redmond, took 30 years to grow all ten fingernails with an "average" length of 75 centimetres. Sadly, she lost all her fingernails in a car accident in 2008. Happily, she suffered no other serious injuries.

Example Five - Real Estate Prices

Real estate agents and property developers only use the median house price.
However, in this example of house prices, we will work out the mean, the median and the mode.

HOUSE PRICES ($)NUMBER OF HOUSES
100 000 - 199 99910
200 000 - 299 99912
300 000 - 399 99913

Answer:

HOUSE PRICES ($) CLASSHOUSE PRICES ($) MIDPOINT
x
NUMBER OF HOUSES
f

f x
100 000 - 199 999149 999.50101 499 995.00
200 000 - 299 999249 999.50122 999 994.50
300 000 - 399 999349 999.50134 549 993.50
f = 35fx = 9 049 983.00

Mean = fx = 9 049 983.00= 258 570.94 = $ 258 600 approx.
f35
Median score = (∑ f + 1) = (35 + 1)= 18th house price = $200 000 to $299 999
22

(The data has already been ordered from smallest to largest in the table.
Count down the frequency column to find the 18th score.
The 18th house price is in the 2nd row.)

Mode = $300 000 to $399 999

Did You Know That...?

According to the Guinness World Records, the longest hair grown by a Chinese woman, Xie Qiuping, measured 5.627 metres long. If the "average" hair growth is about 15 centimetres per year, how long did this take?