A Mean Value Analysis (MVA) approximation is presented for computing the average performance measures of closed-, open-, and mixed-type multiclass queuing networks containing Preemptive Resume (PR) and nonpreemptive Head-Of-Line (HOL) priority service centers. The approximation has essentially the same storage and computational requirements as MVA, thus allowing computationally efficient solutions of large priority queuing networks. The accuracy of the MVA approximation is systematically investigated and presented. It is shown that the approximation can compute the average performance measures of priority networks to within an accuracy of 5 percent for a large range of network parameter values. Accuracy of the method is shown to be superior to that of Sevcik's shadow approximation. © 1984, ACM. All rights reserved.