Excel VARA Function

Excel VARA Function

Excel VARA function estimates variance based on sample data, including text and logical values in cell references. Text and logical value FALSE have the value 0; the logical value TRUE has the value 1.


The syntax of Excel VARA function is:

=VARA(value1, [value2],…)

Excel VARA function can handle from 1 to 255 arguments in total, such as:

Value1 (required argument) – It is the first argument corresponding to a sample data.

[Value2],… (Optional arguments) – These are additional arguments of sample data


Excel VARA function estimates the variance of sample data instead of the entire population. So, the result of Excel VARA function gives a general idea of data spread. The arguments of Excel VARA function can be numbers, named_ranges, arrays or cell references that may contain numeric values, text values, logical values, such as TRUE and FALSE, and empty cells. Text and logical value FALSE are evaluated as 0, and logical value TRUE is evaluated as 1, but empty cells are ignored in cell references.


Suppose you have a sample data set of students’ heights and you want to measure the variance of this sample data set. Variance is the amount the values vary from the average value of data set.

As the data set represents sample data and you also want to evaluate text and logical values that may present in sample data set, so you need to use Excel VARA function as shown in below data table.  


Figure 1. VARA_Function


Following points must be followed when you measure variance using Excel VARA function:

  1. Excel VARA function assumes that data provided in arguments represents to sample instead of entire population.
  2. Excel VARA function must be used when you need to evaluate text and logical values while measuring the variance of the sample data set, otherwise, you must use Excel VAR function.
  3. Text representations of numbers are counted as numbers when entered directly as an argument in Excel VARA function.
  4. Excel VARA function returns #VALUE! error value when you directly enter text value as an argument.
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