Comparing Central Tendency & Variability

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Statistics in Social Sciences



Comparing Central Tendency & Variability

About: How many days of poor physical health do people experience in a typical month? The answer to this question is important because it gives us details about the overall health of the population. This is exactly what the general social survey sought out to examine when they include the survey item in their questionnaire. Examine the results for the 2022 survey below and use the data to compare and contrast measures of central tendency and what they can tell us to measures of variability and what those measures can tell us.

Warning: We will be applying the concepts of central tendency and variability in this lab. If you have not read and taken notes on our chapters 3 & 4 and lecture videos make sure to do so before starting this assignment.

Background & Results:

These results come from a national survey called the General Social Survey. They provide us with an insight on American habits and behaviors. People from across the U.S. of all backgrounds, ages, social class, and genders were asked several questions including the following question: During the past 30 days, for about how many days did your poor physical health keep you from doing your usual activities, such as self-care, work, or recreation?

Here are the results!

Table 1: Statistics for Variable: Hours of Poor Physical Health



(Sample Size)

MeanMedianModeRange (Min/Max)IQRS.D.Days of Poor Physical Health


2.65 days

0 days

0 days

0 to 30 days

0 to 2 days

6.3 days


For your original post in paragraph format write a minimum of 200 words and provide answers and statements to the following prompts:

(Make sure to answer the questions in paragraph format)

Examine the results for central tendency and interpret the findings. On average how many days did people have limitations due to their poor physical health? 

Use the mean, median, and the mode to answer this question

Interpret the findings for each the mode, median, and the mean

Examine the results for measures of variability and interpret the findings. How much variation did Americans have in their days of poor physical health? Use the range, IQR, and standard deviation to answer these questions 

Interpret the findings for each the range, IQR, and standard deviation

Is there much variability in the amount of poor physical health people reported? Does it vary widely from person to person or is there consistency in everyone's answer? What evidence in our data supports your answer?

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Explanation & Answer



Comparing Central Tendency and Variable

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Through this analysis, we look at the central tendency and the scope of the number of
days for which people suffered unhealthy physical status that prevented them from doing their
normal activities, based on the General Social Survey that is a national survey conducted in
In the consideration of measures of central tendency, the mean number of days for poor
physical health was found to be 2.65 days. This hints that, on average, individuals suffered
physical limitations for one or two ...

Very useful material for studying!