A “bell curve” is the nickname given to the shape of a normal distribution, which has a distinct “bell” shape:

The following step-by-step example shows how to make a bell curve in Google Sheets for a given mean and standard deviation.

**Step 1: Define the Mean & Standard Deviation**

First, we’ll define the values for the mean and standard deviation of a given normal distribution:

**Step 2: Define Percentiles**

Next, we’ll define the percentiles to use in the plot ranging from -4 to 4 in increments of 0.1:

**Step 3: Define Data Values**

Next, we’ll create a column of data values to use in the plot using the following formula:

**Step 4: Find the values for the Normal Distribution PDF**

Next, we’ll use the following formula to find the values for the normal distribution probability density function:

**Step 5: Create the Bell Curve**

Lastly, we can highlight the values in the range **B5:C85**, then click **Insert** and then click **Chart**.

The following bell curve will automatically be created:

You’ll notice that if you change the mean and standard deviation, the bell curve will update automatically.

For example, here’s what the bell curve turns into if we use mean = 10 and standard deviation = 2:

Feel free to modify the chart title, add axis labels, and change the color if you’d like to make the chart more aesthetically pleasing.

**Additional Resources**

The following tutorials offer additional information about the normal distribution:

An Introduction to the Normal Distribution

6 Real-Life Examples of the Normal Distribution

Normal CDF Calculator

Double check the formula on step 3. Using that formula I get -5 on the first calculation, not -4.