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noun me·di·an \ˈmē-dē-ən\

Simple Definition of median

  • mathematics : the middle value in a series of values arranged from smallest to largest

Full Definition of median

  1. 1 :  a medial part (as a vein or nerve)

  2. 2 a :  a value in an ordered set of values below and above which there is an equal number of values or which is the arithmetic mean of the two middle values if there is no one middle number b :  a vertical line that divides the histogram of a frequency distribution into two parts of equal area c :  a value of a random variable for which all greater values make the cumulative distribution function greater than one half and all lesser values make it less than one half

  3. 3 a :  a line from a vertex of a triangle to the midpoint of the opposite side b :  a line joining the midpoints of the nonparallel sides of a trapezoid

  4. 4 :  median strip

Origin of median

Middle English mediane, from Late Latin mediana (vena) median (vein), from feminine of Latin medianus in the middle, central, from medius middle — more at mid

First Known Use: 15th century

Synonym Discussion of median

average, mean, median, norm mean something that represents a middle point. average is the quotient obtained by dividing the sum total of a set of figures by the number of figures <scored an average of 85 on tests>. mean may be the simple average or it may represent value midway between two extremes <a high of 70° and a low of 50° give a mean of 60°>. median applies to the value that represents the point at which there are as many instances above as there are below <average of a group of persons earning 3, 4, 5, 8, and 10 dollars an hour is 6 dollars, whereas the median is 5 dollars>. norm means the average of performance of a significantly large group, class, or grade <scores about the norm for fifth grade arithmetic>.



adjective me·di·an

Simple Definition of median

  • : in the middle; especially mathematics : having a value that is in the middle of a series of values arranged from smallest to largest

Full Definition of median

  1. 1 :  being in the middle or in an intermediate position :  medial

  2. 2 :  lying in the plane dividing a bilateral animal into right and left halves

  3. 3 :  relating to or constituting a statistical median

  4. 4 :  produced without occlusion along the lengthwise middle line of the tongue

me·di·an·ly adverb

Examples of median

  1. What is the median price of homes in this area?

  2. <the median price of a home in the area>

Origin of median

Latin medianus

First Known Use: 1592

MEDIAN Defined for Kids


noun me·di·an \ˈmē-dē-ən\

Definition of median

  1. :  a value in a series arranged from smallest to largest below and above which there are an equal number of values or which is the average of the two middle values if there is no one middle value <The median of the set 1, 3, 7, 12, 19 is 7.>

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February 10, 2016

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