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If I have just mean, median and standard deviation, can I derive the distribution curve in Excel?

Posted on 2014-09-15
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If I have just mean, median and standard deviation, can I derive the distribution curve in Excel?
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Question by:fitaliano
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Glenn Ray earned 2000 total points
ID: 40324338
No.  

A distribution function is dependent on the order of the data.  You can have two sets of numbers with identical elements such that the mean, median, and standard deviation are exactly the same.  However, if one was ordered in an ascending manner and another in descending (or randomly ordered) the distribution curve - whether linear, logarithmic, exponential, polynomial, or whatever - would be different.
example data and plot
-Glenn
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by:Steve
ID: 40325334
Yes it is possible.
A normal distribution is based upon the mean (AVERAGE) and the standard deviation (STDDEV.S).

Provided you are referring to a normal distribution (using NORMDIST) you can plot a normal distribution quite simply.

If you see the attached you can see this being plotted.
U--NORMDIST.xlsx
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LVL 27

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by:Glenn Ray
ID: 40333406
As much as I hate to ask, are you sure my answer was the correct answer?  After I saw Steve's post, I realized that a normal distribution is a possible curve that can be calculated (even if the only arguments are the average/mean and standard deviation).

Regards,
-Glenn
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Author Comment

by:fitaliano
ID: 40333421
I need to actually plot curves for what they are: meaning left or right skewed if the coefficient of skewedness is big enough (> abs(0.5) or > abs(1)). Coefficient of skewedness takes into account mean, median and standard deviation.
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