A sample of 15 observations has a standard deviation of 4. The sum of the squared deviations from the sample mean is?

1.) 19

2.)56

3.)60

4.) 224

5.)240

I'm stuck on this problem is you can please help me I would much appreciate it, thanx!

Printable View

- Jan 16th 2009, 05:21 PMjax760Any one good with standard deviations please help
A sample of 15 observations has a standard deviation of 4. The sum of the squared deviations from the sample mean is?

1.) 19

2.)56

3.)60

4.) 224

5.)240

I'm stuck on this problem is you can please help me I would much appreciate it, thanx! - Jan 16th 2009, 05:42 PMvincisonfire

- Jan 17th 2009, 01:32 AMConstatine11
- Jan 17th 2009, 04:34 AMvincisonfire
For a sample you must use a divisor of N-1 to have an unbiased estimation of the real standard deviation.

For a population you must use a divisor of N to get the real standard deviation.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Standar...dard_deviation - Jan 17th 2009, 04:53 AMmr fantastic
Does the question ask for an estimate of a population variance based on the sample variance .....? That would be a completely different question and using N - 1 as the divisor would be appropriate.

When calculating a sample variance in the context of plain and simple univariate statistics, a divisor of N is used. The wikipedia link says this. - Jan 17th 2009, 05:10 AMvincisonfire
Isn't it always the case that we are trying to figure out what the standard deviation of the population is?

I may be wrong but I've never seen a sample variance written with a divisor of N. - Jan 17th 2009, 05:17 AMmr fantastic
No. Eg. You might have data from a test done by a class of 20 students and you're interested in the mean and the standard deviation ......

A key quote from the Wiki link:

"*Note that if the above data set represented only a sample from a greater population, a modified standard deviation would be calculated (**explained below**) to estimate the population standard deviation, which would give 6.93 for this example*." - Jan 17th 2009, 05:19 AMvincisonfire
I understand what you mean.

But as I learned it, in your example, the 20 students would be a population. - Jan 17th 2009, 01:45 PMmr fantastic