# Plotting means and standard deviations

Does it make sense to look at a scatterplot of means versus standard deviations in terms of looking for outliers or changepoints? So the mean is on the x-axis and the standard deviation is on the y-axis. We would get a clusters of data indicating similar data (relatively same mean and standard deviation). Note that I don't know the sample size or individual observations from which these means and standard deviations were computed from.

• Why not? If you weigh a person 3 times, average that and then use that average instead it should not be that much different from just choosing one weight. It is also interesting to the relation to the standard deviation of those weights as this gives you additional valuable information. Commented Feb 28, 2013 at 21:57
• If, in a final analysis, you are using an aggregate measurement that has imprecision between measurements (less significant for weight, but consider blood pressure), you MUST account for that level of variation in your analysis. Inverse variance weighting is a common approach to this. Commented Mar 1, 2013 at 0:25