Excel AVEDEV Function

Using the Excel AVEDEV Function


The Excel AVEDEV function is used to find the average of the absolute deviations of data points from their mean. AVEDEV is a way to measure the variability in a data set.


=AVEDEV (number1, [number2], ...)

Syntax Breakdown

Required. The first number for which you want to find the absolute deviations. Arguments in the function must be either numbers or names, or arrays or references that contain numbers.

Optional. The number2 and subsequent arguments are optional. AVEDEV can handle up to 255 arguments. You can also use an array or reference to an array as opposed to individual arguments separated by commas.

Usage Notes

AVEDEV is a measure of variability and calculates the average of absolute deviations from the mean in a given data set. The function is influenced by the unit of measurement in the input data.

The function ignores empty cells and cells that contain logical values or text when they are contained in an array or reference. If a logical value or text representation of a number is entered directly into the list of arguments, they will be included. Cells with zero (0) values are included.

You may be familiar with the variance (VAR) and standard deviation (STDEV) functions that deal with negative deviations by squaring the deviations prior to averaging them. AVEDEV only works with absolute values. While not as common as VAR or STDEV, the AVEDEV function does have an advantage: the units used remain unchanged. For example, if values are entered as inches, the output will also be in inches.