This guide covers everything you need to know about the Google Sheets STDEVP function, including its definition, syntax, use cases, and how to use it..

## What is the STDEVP Function? How Does It Work?

The STDEVP function is a Google Sheets function that returns the standard deviation of a population. In statistics, standard deviation is a measure that quantifies the amount of variation or dispersion in a set of values. A low standard deviation means that the values tend to be close to the mean, while a high standard deviation means that the values are spread out over a wider range.

In this context, the STDEVP function calculates the standard deviation for an entire population, not just a sample. This makes it different from the STDEV function, which calculates the standard deviation across a sample. In essence, the STDEVP function is used when you have data for an entire population, and you want to find out how dispersed the data is.

One of the key things to note about the STDEVP function is that it interprets text values as errors. If you want to calculate standard deviation while interpreting text values as 0, you would need to use the STDEVPA function instead.

Also, it’s worth noting that if the total number of values supplied as value arguments is not at least two, STDEVP will return the #DIV/0! error. This is because the standard deviation can’t be calculated from a single number.

Lastly, the STDEVP function is equivalent to the square root of the variance (VARP function) using the same dataset. Variance is a measure of how much values in a dataset differ from the mean, and standard deviation is simply the square root of variance. Hence, this connection between the two.

Overall, the STDEVP function is a vital function for statistical analysis in Google Sheets, enabling users to understand the dispersion of data in a given population. This can be useful for a range of applications, including business data analysis, scientific research, and more.

## STDEVP Syntax

The syntax and arguments for the function are as follows: STDEVP(value1, [value2, …]).

Here are the arguments in detail:

**value1**: This is the first value or range of your population. It is a required argument and can be a numeric value, a cell reference, or a range that represents the population you want to calculate the standard deviation for.**value2, …**: These are additional values or ranges that you want to include in the population. These are optional arguments and can be up to 30 in number. However, Google Sheets supports an arbitrary number of arguments for this function.

In terms of usage notes related to syntax and arguments, here are some key points:

- The STDEVP function can accept more than 30 arguments despite the official documentation stating a maximum of 30. This is due to Google Sheets supporting an arbitrary number of arguments for this function.
- If you provide less than two values as arguments, the STDEVP function will return the #DIV/0! error. This is because standard deviation requires at least two values to be calculated.
- If any of the value arguments include text, the STDEVP function will return an error. If you want to calculate the standard deviation with text values interpreted as 0, you should use the STDEVPA function instead.
- The STDEVP function calculates the standard deviation for an entire population. If you want to calculate the standard deviation across a sample, you should use the STDEV function.
- STDEVP is equivalent to the square root of the variance, which can be calculated as SQRT(VARP(…)) using the same dataset. This means you can use either function to calculate the standard deviation, depending on your preference.

## Examples of How to Use the STDEVP Function

Here are some practical examples of how to use the STDEVP function in Google Sheets:

### Example #1: Calculating Standard Deviation of a Complete Set of Numbers

Let’s say we have a list of numbers in cells A1 to A5: 4, 10, 15, 20, 25. To calculate the standard deviation of this complete set of numbers, you would use the STDEVP function like this:

=STDEVP(A1:A5)

After entering this formula, Google Sheets will return the standard deviation of the entire set of numbers, which in this case is 7.905694150420948.

### Example #2: Ignoring Text and Boolean Values

Let’s assume we have a mixed list of numbers, text, and boolean values in cells B1 to B5: 5, “”hello””, TRUE, 10, 15. If you want to calculate the standard deviation of the numbers, ignoring the text and boolean values, you would use the STDEVP function like this:

=STDEVP(B1:B5)

Google Sheets will ignore the non-numerical values and calculate the standard deviation of the numbers. In this case, the result would be 5.

### Example #3: Standard Deviation of a Dataset with Empty Cells

Suppose we have a dataset in cells C1 to C5: 7, 12, “”””, 17, 22. The third cell (C3) is empty. If we want to calculate the standard deviation of this dataset, ignoring the empty cell, we would use the STDEVP function like this:

=STDEVP(C1:C5)

Google Sheets will ignore the empty cell and calculate the standard deviation of the remaining numbers. In this case, the result would be 6.454972243679028.

### Example #4: Applying STDEVP Function on a Range of Cells

Let’s say we have a dataset spread across a range of cells from D1 to E3: 6, 11 in D1:D2, and 16, 21, 26 in E1:E3. To calculate the standard deviation of this dataset, we would use the STDEVP function like this:

=STDEVP(D1:E3)

Google Sheets will calculate the standard deviation of all the numbers in the range D1:E3. In this case, the result would be 8.16496580927726.

## STDEVP: Common Mistakes & Problems

When using the STDEVP function in Google Sheets, users often encounter several common mistakes and problems. Understanding these issues can help you avoid them and use the STDEVP function more effectively:

**Inputting Incorrect Data Types**: The STDEVP function only calculates standard deviation for numeric values. If you include non-numeric values such as text or logical values in your data set, the function will return an error.**Ignoring Blank Cells**: If your data range includes blank cells, STDEVP will not consider these in its calculation. This could skew your results if you intended the blank cells to represent zeroes or missing data.**Misunderstanding What STDEVP Measures**: STDEVP measures the standard deviation of a population, not a sample. If you want to calculate the standard deviation of a sample, you should use the STDEVS function instead.**Not Including Enough Data Points**: The STDEVP function requires at least two data points to calculate standard deviation. If you only include one data point, the function will return an error.**Incorrectly Structuring Your Data Range**: The STDEVP function calculates standard deviation across all values in the specified range. If your data is structured in a way that meaningful groups of values are spread across multiple ranges, the function may not return the result you expect.**Misusing the Function in an Array Formula**: If you’re using STDEVP in an array formula, ensure that the range argument is array-enabled. If it’s not, the function will only consider the first cell in the range, leading to inaccurate results.**Failing to Update the Data Range**: If you add or remove data points from your data set, you need to update the range argument in your STDEVP function to reflect the new data. If you don’t, the function will continue to calculate based on the old data, and your results will be incorrect.

These common mistakes can all lead to inaccurate results or errors when using the STDEVP function. By understanding these potential pitfalls, you can use STDEVP more effectively and accurately in your Google Sheets.

## Why Is STDEVP Not Working? Troubleshooting Common Errors

If you’ve attempted to use the STDEVP function in Google Sheets and encountered an error, you’re not alone. This section will delve into some of the most common errors that users face when using STDEVP, what causes them, and how you can resolve them.

### #VALUE! Error

**Cause**: The #VALUE! error typically occurs when the STDEVP function is given arguments that it cannot process. These might include text strings, dates, or boolean values. Since STDEVP is designed to calculate the standard deviation of a population based on a series of numeric values, it cannot handle non-numeric inputs.

**Solution**: To resolve the #VALUE! error, ensure that all arguments provided to the STDEVP function are numeric. If you’re using cell references, confirm that they only contain numeric values. If there are any non-numeric values, either remove them or convert them to numbers before proceeding.

### #DIV/0! Error

**Cause**: The #DIV/0! error appears when the STDEVP function attempts to divide by zero. This typically happens when you’re trying to calculate the standard deviation of an empty dataset or a dataset with only one value.

**Solution**: To fix the #DIV/0! error, make sure your dataset includes at least two numeric values. Remember, the standard deviation is a measure of variability, and there is no variability in a dataset with fewer than two values.

### #REF! Error

**Cause**: The #REF! error signifies that an invalid cell reference has been used in the STDEVP function. This can occur if you’ve deleted a row, column, or cell that was previously referenced by your STDEVP function, causing the reference to break.

**Solution**: To resolve the #REF! error, double-check your STDEVP function to ensure all cell references are valid. If you’ve recently deleted any cells, rows, or columns, you may need to adjust your STDEVP function to reflect these changes.

### #NUM! Error

**Cause**: The #NUM! error indicates a numerical problem with the formula. This is less common with the STDEVP function, but can occur if the dataset contains extremely large numbers, causing the calculation to exceed the maximum representable number.

**Solution**: To fix the #NUM! error, review your dataset for any unusually large numbers. If you find any, consider scaling down these numbers or adjusting them to a more manageable size.

### #N/A Error

**Cause**: The #N/A error is displayed when the STDEVP function fails to find any cells to calculate. This often occurs when your range criteria do not match any cells in the dataset.

**Solution**: To rectify the #N/A error, ensure that your range criteria match at least one cell in the dataset. If you’re using a filter or condition within your STDEVP function, make sure it’s set up correctly and matches the data you intend to calculate.

### #ERROR! Error

**Cause**: The #ERROR! error is a general error message that indicates something went wrong with the function, but Google Sheets can’t specify what exactly.

**Solution**: To solve the #ERROR! error, try breaking down your function into smaller parts and running them separately to identify where the issue lies. Once the problematic part is identified, you can troubleshoot that specific part of your function.

## Using STDEVP With Other Google Sheets Functions

Combining the STDEVP function with other Google Sheets functions can enhance its utility and provide more complex data analysis. The STDEVP function can be used with functions like AVERAGE, SUM, and COUNT to calculate various statistical measures. Below are a few examples of how STDEVP can be used with other Google Sheets functions.

### With AVERAGE

**Usage**: When you need to calculate the standard deviation and the average of a dataset simultaneously, you can pair STDEVP with the AVERAGE function.

**Example**: Suppose you have a dataset in cells A1 to A10. You can use the formula =STDEVP(A1:A10) to calculate the standard deviation and =AVERAGE(A1:A10) to calculate the average.

### With SUM

**Usage**: The SUM function can be used with STDEVP to calculate the total and the standard deviation of a dataset.

**Example**: If you have a list of numbers in cells B1 to B10, you can use the formula =STDEVP(B1:B10) to calculate the standard deviation and =SUM(B1:B10) to calculate the total of the numbers.

### With COUNT

**Usage**: The COUNT function can be used with STDEVP to determine the standard deviation and the count of numbers in a dataset.

**Example**: If you have a dataset in cells C1 to C10, you can use the formula =STDEVP(C1:C10) to calculate the standard deviation. To find out how many numbers are in your dataset, you can use the formula =COUNT(C1:C10).

### With IF

**Usage**: The IF function can be used with STDEVP to calculate the standard deviation of a subset of a dataset that meets a certain condition.

**Example**: If you have a dataset in cells D1 to D10 and you want to calculate the standard deviation of numbers that are greater than 5, you can use the formula =STDEVP(IF(D1:D10>5, D1:D10)).

### With ARRAYFORMULA

**Usage**: The ARRAYFORMULA function can be used with STDEVP to calculate the standard deviation of multiple ranges or arrays.

**Example**: If you want to calculate the standard deviation of numbers in cells E1 to E10 and F1 to F10, you can use the formula =STDEVP(ARRAYFORMULA({E1:E10; F1:F10})).

For more details on the STDEVP function, check out the official documentation at the Google Docs Editors Help Center.