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How To Calculate Standard Error in Excel

Last Updated : 06 Dec, 2023
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How to calculate standard error in Excel – Quick Steps

  1. Enter your data
  2. Create labels
  3. Calculate your standard deviation
  4. Count your items
  5. Calculate standard error

The standard error tells how accurate the mean of any given sample from that population is likely to be compared to the true population mean. 

What is the Standard Error in Excel?

The Standard error calculation provides valuable insight into the likely deviation of the mean value of a sample dataset from the overall mean value of the larger data population under evaluation. For instance, consider a scenario where a company aims to gauge customer satisfaction ratings within its customer base. By collecting ratings from a representative subset of their client, the standard error calculation aids the company in assessing the extent to which the sampled information aligns with the broader sentiment of all customers.

Why is the Standard Error Calculation important?

The Standard error emerges as a crucial calculation, particularly when working with sample data sets, as it furnishes a reliable estimation of their credibility. As the number of samples integrated into your standard deviation calculation expands, the magnitude of your standard error diminishes. This reduction signals in increased level of confidence in the accuracy of the sample, establishing a stronger connection between the sample’s insights and the broader population.


Standard Error=Standard Deviation/sqrt(n)


  • n= No. of samples.

Let’s follow the below steps and take a look at an example:

Step 1:  The dataset is given as follows:


Step 2:  Now for calculating the standard error we have to find the mean, standard deviation.


Step 3: Here we are calculating the standard deviation. And we have selected the rows whose standard deviation we have to calculate.

Select-rows to calculate standard deviation

Step 4:  Now for calculating the standard error we have divided the standard deviation with the square root of no. of samples. The no. of samples here are 12.

Calculating Standard deviation

This is the way by which we have calculated the standard error. In this mean was optional.

Tips for Calculating Standard Error in Excel

When harnessing the Power of Microsoft Excel for standard error calculations, consider below tips to steamline your process and optimize your results:

Simplify with Comprehensive Formulas:

While maintaining clarity is paramount, you can opt for a more steamlined approach by consolidating your calculations. Although individual computations for standard deviation and count provide transparency, they are not obligatory. You can choose to employ a single formula that encompasses both calculations. To achieve this, substitute each cell in the standard error formulas with the formula used in those cells. “STDEV(A2:A6)/SQRT(COUNT(A2:A6))”.

Plan your Document:

Before delving into the creation of your spreadsheet layout, take a moment to chart out your document’s blueprint. This preliminary planning ensures a more efficient design, tailored to your specific needs. Grasping the mature of your data, the number of entries, and whether your datasets is static or prone to future expansion will guide the strategic placement of labels and calculations, leading to a well-structured document.

Expand your Ranges:

Incorporate foresight into your standard deviation and count formulas by extending your data ranges beyond your final data point. Excel’s calculations functions adeptly ignore blank cells, affording you the ability to future-proof your calculations. This approach enables you to add new data points seamlessly in the future without necessity of adjusting your formulas.

FAQs on Standard Error in Excel

Q1: What is Standard Error in Excel?


The Standard Error in Excel is a Statistical measure that quantifies the variability or dispersion if sample’s data mean from the actual population mean. It indicates the precision of the sample mean as an estimate of the true population mean.

Q2: What is the formal to calculate standard error?


To Calculate the standard error in Excel, you can use the below formula:


Q3: Can standard error be negative in Excel?


No, Standard error cannot be nagtive in Excel or in any other statistical analysis. It is always a positive value, as it represents a measure of variability or dispersion.

Q4: Is there any built-in function to calculate the standard error in Excel?


There isn’t any direct “STANDARDERROR” Function in Excel, but you can use the formula ‘=STDEV(range)/SQRT(COUNT(range))” to calculate the standard error.

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