The population distribution is the probability distribution derived from the knowledge of all elements of a population (Mann 2012). We know that depending on the population of interest the random variable of interest can be a discrete variable, meaning at least in principle it is countable, or the random variable of interest can be a continuous variable, thus can take on any value within a given interval. Both, the discrete and the continuous probability distribution may be described by statistical parameters, such as the mean, the standard deviation, the median or the mode, among others. These parameters describing the population are, however, always constant meaning the population statistics do not change. Because the population is the set of all elements, there is, for example, only one value of the population mean, one value for the standard deviation and so on.


The E-Learning project SOGA-R was developed at the Department of Earth Sciences by Kai Hartmann, Joachim Krois and Annette Rudolph. You can reach us via mail by soga[at]

Creative Commons License
You may use this project freely under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Please cite as follow: Hartmann, K., Krois, J., Rudolph, A. (2023): Statistics and Geodata Analysis using R (SOGA-R). Department of Earth Sciences, Freie Universitaet Berlin.