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Accuracy and Precision Review

Chemistry Quick Review of Accuracy and Precision

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This target has been struck with a high degree of precision, yet a low degree of accuracy.

This target has been struck with a high degree of precision, yet a low degree of accuracy.

DarkEvil, Wikipedia Commons This target has been hit with a high degree of accuracy, yet a low degree of precision.

This target has been hit with a high degree of accuracy, yet a low degree of precision.

DarkEvil, Wikipedia Commons

Accuracy and precision are important concepts, as they relate to any experimental measurement that you would make.

Accuracy

Accuracy refers to the agreement between experimental data and a known value. You can think of it in terms of a bullseye in which the target is hit close to the center, yet the marks in the target aren't necessarily close to each other.

Precision

Precision refers to how well experimental values agree with each other. If you hit a bullseye precisely, then you are able to hit the same spot on the target each time, even though that spot may be distant from the center.

Keep in Mind

Data can be very precise such that each data point is close to the others, yet contain a high degree of experimental error.

Learn More

How To Calculate the Mean or Average
Calculate Mean, Median, Mode, and Range
How To Calculate Standard Deviation
Related Video
What Is the Importance of Chemistry?

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