# What is a bad standard deviation?

## What is a bad standard deviation?

For an approximate answer, please estimate your coefficient of variation (CV=**standard deviation** / mean). As a rule of thumb, a CV >= 1 indicates a relatively high variation, while a CV < 1 can be considered low. ... Remember, **standard deviations** aren't "good" or "**bad**". They are indicators of how spread out your data is.

## What can affect standard deviation?

The **standard deviation** is **affected** by outliers (extremely low or extremely high numbers in the data set). That's because the **standard deviation** is based on the distance from the mean. And remember, the mean is also **affected** by outliers. The **standard deviation** has the same units as the original data.

## Is standard deviation reliable?

Smaller **standard deviations** reflect more clustered data. More clustered data means less extreme values. A data set with less extreme values has a more **reliable** mean. The **standard deviation** is therefore a good measure of the **reliability** of the mean value.

## Why is lower standard deviation better?

**Low standard deviation** means data are clustered around the mean, and high **standard deviation** indicates data are more spread out. A **standard deviation** close to zero indicates that data points are close to the mean, whereas a high or **low standard deviation** indicates data points are respectively above or below the mean.

## What would a standard deviation of zero mean?

When the **standard deviation** is **zero**, there is no spread; that is, the all the data values are equal to each other. The **standard deviation** is small when the data are all concentrated close to the **mean**, and is larger when the data values show more variation from the **mean**.

## Is the standard deviation an average?

The **average deviation**, or **mean** absolute **deviation**, is calculated similarly to **standard deviation**, but it uses absolute values instead of squares to circumvent the issue of negative differences between the data points and their means. ... Calculate the **average** of the absolute values of those differences.

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