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    Statistics: What is an outlier? Bias?

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    Suppose we look at real estate sales for an older neighborhood with similar houses. Suppose the prices range from $200k to $300k. In this case, the mean and median measures will be similar. Now suppose that a house burns down and catches the house next door on fire. Before long, someone builds a large house across the two empty lots. The value of that house might be $750k. Now the mean will be much higher but the median will stay the same. Here is some data for practice:

    Before data:
    $200, $250, $300
    Mean = median = $250

    After data:
    $200, $250, $300, $750
    Mean = $375, Median = $275


    What are the statistical definitions for:
    â?¢How do these terms apply to this example?
    I look forward to your research,

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    Solution Preview

    An outlier is one that is far off from the rest of the data points. Clearly the $750 home is an outlier in the neighborhood where the middle-of-the-pack home (median) and the average price (mean) were the same. Now the mean is ...

    Solution Summary

    Your response is 139 words in everyday language suitable for a novice. It explains outliers and how bias is not in play in this example.