The median is the amount of the middle number in a sorted list of numbers, so that half the data in the sample are above the median and half are below it. The median represents the approximate average amount of a set of numbers, though the individual values in the set can skew the median higher or lower than the actual average. The following steps are used to derive the median:

  1. Sort the list of numbers in ascending order.

  2. If the number of values is an odd number, the middle figure in the list is the median.

  3. If the number of values is an even number, the average of the middle pair of numbers is the median.

For example, the median is the fourth number (stated in bold) in the following sorted list of numbers, where there are three numbers on either side of this value:

2, 8, 15, 21, 37, 41, 52