The **VARA **function is a *statistical* function that can calculate and return the variance of a sample by evaluating text and logical values. Variance provides a general idea of how much data points are spread in a data set, and can be used to calculate the standard deviation or determine the risk of an investment. In this guide, we’re going to show you how to use the **VARA **function and also go over some tips and error handling methods.

## Supported versions

- Excel 2003 and newer versions

## VARA Function Syntax

## Arguments

number1 | The first number argument corresponding to a sample of a population. |

[number2] | The earliest date to retrieve the data. If [interval] is not 0 (daily), the first date can be earlier than the specified date. |

## VARA Function Example

The **VARA** function does not accept numeric, text, or logical values as its arguments. While text values and *FALSE* logical value is evaluated as *0*, *TRUE* becomes *1*. You can use range references or static values like in any other formula.

The function calculates the variance using the following function:

- x: sample mean (average)
- x ̅: sample element
- n: sample size

Here is the comparison of the two approaches:

SUMPRODUCT(POWER(AVERAGE(evaluated)-evaluated,2))/

(COUNT(evaluated)-1))

The example below uses a formula with the named range **sample** (B5:B10).

**LET**function to simplify mathematical approach. Check out

**Function: LET**article to learn more.

## Tips

- The
**VARA**function assumes that its arguments are a sample of the population. If your data represents the entire population, use**VARPA**instead. - The
**VARA**function evaluates text and logical values like*TRUE*and*FALSE*. If you want to ignore non-numeric values, check out the**VAR.S**function. - Empty cells are ignored.

## Issues

- Any error in the arguments will cause the function to return an error.