How to Abbreviate Average

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The word “average” is frequently used in business writing and other places where numbers are used. When brevity is needed, it is sometimes necessary to abbreviate “average” to save space. In this article we will teach you how to abbreviate the word “average,” but let’s first start with a definition.

Definition of Average

There are two main definitions of average.

The first definition of average is mathematical. In mathematics, average refers to the result you get by adding two or more amounts and then dividing by the number of amounts. This calculation allows you to find the general amount that is the closest to the medium for all members of the group. In short, the average is an estimate that aims to answer what is the most likely common value in a large group. Like for example the average income of an American citizen.

The second definition is similar but is more based on talent or achievements. Something average in common usage is something that doesn’t particularly stand out. It fits firmly in the limits of normalcy and doesn’t exceed them nor drop below them. In short, average is normal or common.

While both ideas are close to the notion of the “common value” the way they are used and the logic behind them does vary a bit, so it’s important to keep the distinctions in mind.

How Do You Abbreviate Average

There are two main forms of abbreviating average and those are:

  • avg.
  • av.

It’s easy to assume they are related to the differing meanings of the word the two abbreviations are in fact completely interchangeable. The different forms mostly exist out of common habit more than anything, and while avg. is by far the most used out of the two either is perfectly fine and acceptable.

For the plural form of average we should use “avgs.” and “avs.” with the same logic as before applying.

Synonyms for Average

The main synonyms for average are the following: Moderate, Ordinary, Regular, Common, Medium, Middling and Standard.

Most of these words will work for either context too, as the rest of the phrase will likely make it clear what is the meaning of the word in that sentence.

When to Use the Synonyms

Generally speaking abbreviations should only be used when it’s considered important to save on space or character count. Abbreviating without the need is considered a grammatical error as well so caution should be paid to when and why you abbreviate a word.

In the case of average this means that the main reason to abbreviate it is when you need to use it in a publication or communication that has limited space or where each character costs; this largely means email headers, newspapers, adverts and presentation cards.

That said due to the importance of the word to mathematics you will also see it abbreviated a lot in textbooks and mathematical essays. In these cases it’s due to how often the word would have to be used, in which case the abbreviation saves space globally.

Some examples of when to use the synonyms:

  • Calculate the avg. of the following quantities.
  • John is an above av. student.

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