# Statistical dispersion

In statistics, **dispersion** (also called **variability**, **scatter**, or **spread**) is the extent to which a distribution is stretched or squeezed.[1] Common examples of measures of statistical dispersion are the variance, standard deviation, and interquartile range. For instance, when the variance of data in a set is large, the data is widely scattered. On the other hand, when the variance is small, the data in the set is clustered.

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Dispersion is contrasted with location or central tendency, and together they are the most used properties of distributions.