Calculates the average (arithmetic mean) of the values in the list of arguments.
Value1, value2, ... are 1 to 255 cells, ranges of cells, or values for which you want the average.
- Arguments can be the following: numbers; names, arrays, or references that contain numbers; text representations of numbers; or logical values, such as TRUE and FALSE, in a reference.
- Logical values and text representations of numbers that you type directly into the list of arguments are counted.
- Arguments that contain TRUE evaluate as 1; arguments that contain FALSE evaluate as 0 (zero).
- Array or reference arguments that contain text evaluate as 0 (zero). Empty text ("") evaluates as 0 (zero).
- If an argument is an array or reference, only values in that array or reference are used. Empty cells and text values in the array or reference are ignored.
- Arguments that are error values or text that cannot be translated into numbers cause errors.
- If you do not want to include logical values and text representations of numbers in a reference as part of the calculation, use the AVERAGE function.
Note The AVERAGEA function measures central tendency, which is the location of the center of a group of numbers in a statistical distribution. The three most common measures of central tendency are:
- Average which is the arithmetic mean, and is calculated by adding a group of numbers and then dividing by the count of those numbers. For example, the average of 2, 3, 3, 5, 7, and 10 is 30 divided by 6, which is 5.
- Median which is the middle number of a group of numbers; that is, half the numbers have values that are greater than the median, and half the numbers have values that are less than the median. For example, the median of 2, 3, 3, 5, 7, and 10 is 4.
- Mode which is the most frequently occurring number in a group of numbers. For example, the mode of 2, 3, 3, 5, 7, and 10 is 3.
For a symmetrical distribution of a group of numbers, these three measures of central tendency are all the same. For a skewed distribution of a group of numbers, they can be different.
Tip When averaging cells, keep in mind the difference between empty cells and those containing the value zero, especially if you have cleared the Show a zero in cells that have a zero value check box in the Working with Office Applications section of the Advanced category on the Excel Options dialog box under the File menu. Empty cells are not counted but zero values are.
The example may be easier to understand if you copy it to a blank worksheet.
How to copy an example
- Create a blank workbook or worksheet.
- Select the example in the Help topic.
Note Do not select the row or column headers.
Selecting an example from Help
- Press CTRL+C.
- In the worksheet, select cell A1, and press CTRL+V.
- To switch between viewing the results and viewing the formulas that return the results, press CTRL+` (grave accent), or on the Formulas tab, in the Formula Auditing group, click the Show Formulas button.
||Average of the numbers above, and the text "Not Available". The cell with the text "Not available" is used in the calculation. (5.6)
||Average of the numbers above, and the empty cell. (7)