# Variance

## Description

The variance is a parameter that describes, in part, either the actual probability distribution of an observed population of numbers, or the theoretical probability distribution of a not-fully-observed population from which a sample of numbers has been drawn. Variance measures how far a set of numbers is spread out. A variance of zero indicates that all the values are identical. Variance is always non-negative: a small variance indicates that the data points tend to be very close to the mean (expected value) and hence to each other, while a high variance indicates that the data points are very spread out around the mean and from each other. Variance is the square of the standard deviation of a set of numbers of n equally likely values.

Related formulas## Variables

Var | Variance (dimensionless) |

x | Set of numbers (dimensionless) |