# Variance

The Variance function estimates the sample variance of a column or group. This statistical measure determines the spread of distribution or degree to which the column or grouped values deviate from the mean. A small variance indicates the values are close to the mean (little variability), while a large variance indicates the values are dispersed farther from the mean (greater variability).

Variance assumes your dataset is a sample of a larger population. If the dataset represents an entire population, use the VariancePop function to calculate actual variance.

## Syntax

``````Variance(field)
``````

Function argument:

field
(required) The column to reference when estimating sample variance.

## Underlying formula

 ∑( xi – x̄ )2 n – 1
• xi = each sample value
• x̄ = the mean of all sample values
• n = the total number of sample values (sample size)

## Example

A table contains a sample of customer ratings for specific products. If the data is grouped by product, you can use the following formula to measure and compare the ratings variability for each product.

``````Variance([Customer rating (0-5)])
``````

When you calculate the formula in the Product grouping, the function returns the sample variance for each product. This example indicates a broader range of customer ratings for Product B.

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