The Math Forum

Search All of the Math Forum:

Views expressed in these public forums are not endorsed by NCTM or The Math Forum.

Math Forum » Discussions » Inactive » nysmathab

Notice: We are no longer accepting new posts, but the forums will continue to be readable.

Topic: #39: Median or Mean?
Replies: 4   Last Post: Jun 18, 2008 11:10 AM

Advanced Search

Back to Topic List Back to Topic List Jump to Tree View Jump to Tree View   Messages: [ Previous | Next ]

Posts: 245
Registered: 12/3/04
#39: Median or Mean?
Posted: Jun 17, 2008 11:00 PM
  Click to see the message monospaced in plain text Plain Text   Click to reply to this topic Reply

We grade this one tomorrow, and I thought there would have been some discussion by now.

1. Wording. I'll send it in with my comments, but they certainly have said "better" and not "best" (which measure of central tendency best represents the data).

2. Which one is it? Rubric says median. Is there mathematical reasoning that backs this up? Before I got the answer key I had two answers to this one jotted down:

a) the median, since $800k is an outlier, and distorts the mean.
b) the mean, since the $400k's are not outliers, but their effect is diminished by using the median.

3. Finally, just cultural or aesthetic: these measures of central tendency are useful for giving snapshots of large groups of data. Seven points really isn't enough.

Jonathan Halabi
HS of American Studies
the Bronx
* To unsubscribe from this mailing list, email the message
* "unsubscribe nysmathab" to
* Read prior posts and download attachments from the web archives at

Point your RSS reader here for a feed of the latest messages in this topic.

[Privacy Policy] [Terms of Use]

© The Math Forum at NCTM 1994-2018. All Rights Reserved.