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Top 15 Must Know Statistical Functions in Excel For Beginners

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30th Aug, 2022
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Top 15 Must Know Statistical Functions in Excel For Beginners

Microsoft Excel is popularly used for several purposes, including conducting mathematical computations. Functions in Excel are widely used in statistics along with statistical functions. 

Statistical functions are primarily used to mathematically process a specified set of cells in a worksheet. For example, to add values occupying a large group of cells, you need to use the SUM function. 

Functions are more extensively used than formulas when a mathematical process is applied to a group of cells. Using formulas to add values, the location of every cell must be added one at a time to the formula. It is time-consuming, especially when the values of multiple cell locations need to be added. This is where statistical functions come to play.

The main purpose of a statistical function is to execute statistical, logical and mathematical operations using specific values in a particular order. Numerous statistical functions, principles and algorithms are used for analysing raw data, constructing statistical models, and much more.  Read to know more about statistical formulas in excel. 

Statistical Functions in Excel

In Microsoft Excel, a wide range of functions related to statistics is present, like mean, median, mode, etc. Apart from these, Excel also provides a wide array of beneficial and important statistical functions. Some of the fundamental statistical functions are often used in Data Science. 

Here is a list of some of the most integral statistical functions used in Excel:-

  1. COUNT function In Excel: The COUNT function is used for counting the number of cells that have a number. This function solely counts the number. 

Syntax for the COUNT function = COUNT(value1, [value2], …)

  1. COUNTA function In Excel: This function is used for counting everything. Apart from the number within the cell, it will count any information, including error values and empty text.

Syntax for the COUNTA function = COUNT(value1, [value2], …)

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  1. COUNTBLANK function In Excel: The COUNTBLANK function solely counts empty or blank cells. 

Syntax for the COUNTBlANK function = COUNTBLANK(range)

  1. COUNTIFS function In Excel: This is the most used statistical function in Excel that works on one or multiple conditions in a specific range and counts the cell(s) that meet the said condition.

Syntax for the COUNTIFS function = COUNTIFS (range1, criteria1, [range2]

  1. STANDARD DEVIATION Function In Excel: The STANDARD DEVIATION Function in Excel calculates the observed value that’s deviated or varied from the average. It is the most commonly used statistical function in Excel. 

Syntax for the STANDARD DEVIATION Function: 

= STDEV.P(number1,[number2],…)

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  1. VARIANCE function In Excel: The Variance function is used for determining the degree of variation present in a data set. More data is spreading, leading to more variance. 

Formula for VARIANCE function = VAR(number1, [number2], …)

  1. QUARTILES function In Excel: Quartile can divide data into four parts. Akin to the median function that divides data into two equal parts. This function returns the quartiles of a particular dataset, along with the first, second, and third quartiles and the minimum and max values. 

Syntax for QUARTILES function = QUARTILE (array, quart)

  1. CORRELATION function In Excel: This Excel function determines the connection between the two variables. Data analysts primarily use this function for studying data thoroughly. Remember that the CORRELATION coefficient range is situated between -1 to +1.

Syntax for the CORRELATION function = CORREL(array1, array2)

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  1. MAX function In Excel: This function returns the highest numeric value present in a given data set or array.

Syntax for the MAX function = MAX (number1, [number2], …)

  1. MIN function In Excel: The MIN function is the exact opposite of the MAX function in Excel. It returns the smallest numeric value in a given data set or array.

Syntax for the MAX function = MAX (number1, [number2], …)

  1. LARGE function  In Excel: The LARGE function in Excel is almost identical to the MAX function. They are different because they return the nth largest value in a specific data set or array. 

Syntax for  LARGE function = LARGE (array, k)

  1. SMALL function  In Excel: In Excel, the SMALL function is like the MIN function. It returns the smallest numeric value in a specific data set or array. The only difference is that it returns the smallest nth value in a given data set or array.

Syntax for  SMALL function = SMALL (array, k)

  1. MEAN Calculation In Excel: The MEAN formula in Excel is one of the most commonly used statistical functions that can add all numbers in a dataset and divide by the number of points combined.

The formula for the Mean Calculation In Excel: =AVERAGE (array of numbers)

  1. MEDIAN function in Excel: The MEDIAN statistical function in Excel is used whenever an even amount of numbers are present in the dataset. It is additionally used for calculating the average of the two middle numbers. 

The syntax for the Median Calculation In Excel: =MEDIAN (array of numbers) 

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  1. MODE function in Excel: The MODE function in Excel returns the most commonly recurring number in any numeric dataset.

Formula for MODE function in Excel: =MODE (number1, [number2], …)


Statistics is extensively used in every industry, including business, engineering, marketing, healthcare, education, etc. It helps organisations to read numbers for present and future planning. And Microsoft Excel is the most commonly used spreadsheet tool for mathematical and statistical calculations. It is used for charting and presenting data, financial forecasting, budget planning, etc. Essentially, Microsoft Excel is used in a host of use cases, particularly by Data Analysts and Data Science professionals on a daily basis.

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Check out upGrad’s top-tier Data Analytics Certificate Program to get in-depth Excel training. This 12-month course will help you upskill and gain industry-relevant skills.


Rohit Sharma

Blog Author
Rohit Sharma is the Program Director for the UpGrad-IIIT Bangalore, PG Diploma Data Analytics Program.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1Which statistical functions are most common in data analysis?

Data analysis uses countless statistical functions, but a few are pretty commonly used. The most common statistical functions used by data analysts and professionals in this field are the MODE, MEDIAN, STANDARD DEVIATION, VARIANCE, AVERAGE, QUARTILES, CORRELATION, etc.

2What are Statistical functions, algorithms and principles used for?

Most statistical functions, principles, and algorithms are used to analyse large and raw datasets, build statistical models, and forecast results that directly influence critical business decision-making.

3Statistical formulas use which Function Library?

The Function Library can be easily accessed by clicking on the Formulas tab on the Ribbon. Next, click on the More Functions option from the Function Library group of commands. Select the desired Statistical option from the drop-down menu to access it.

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