Both the mean and the median are measures of center.

If you have a symmetrical set of data -- IF THE NUMBERS IN THE SET ARE EVENLY SPACED -- the mean and the median will be EXACTLY THE SAME.

**Here is WHY:**

If you have a data set: 25, 50, 75

MEAN = (25 + 50 + 75) = 150 / 3 = 50

**MEDIAN = 50 (the number bang in the center)**

**Both values are the same. **

When dealing with skewed data sets (when the numbers are NOT evenly spaced), it is better to use the median to express the center. It is RESISTANT to extreme values.

**Here is WHY:**

If you have a data set: 20, 50, 100

MEAN = (20 + 50 + 100) / 3 = 56.6666666

**MEDIAN = 50**

If we make this set even more extreme: 10, 50, 150

MEAN = (10 + 50 + 150) / 3 = 53.333333

**MEDIAN = 50**

**No matter how we change the values in this set, if the middle number is 50, the MEDIAN will be 50. ALWAYS. **

**The mean is SENSITIVE to change by every value, and therefore should only be used where the data is normally distributed. **

I always remembered this by memorizing that we are all "__sensitive__ to __mean__ [people]" - but whatever works for you!