Graphical Representation of Data


Any data before they are analyzed by statistical methods have to be arranged and displayed in a manner that is informative and attractive. Tabular representation is one form of doing it. But for those who do not have an affinity for numbers, tables are not as attractive. Graphic or diagrammatic presentation of data adds a pictorial effect to what would otherwise be just a mass of figures. A major advantage of these representations is that they have more appeal especially to a layman as they communicate information visually. For this reason graphs are often used in newspapers, magazines and businesses around the world. As features of data become visible at a glance in a graph, one can study easily the fluctuation of data and hence know the correlation between two or more sets of data, which in turn helps in forecasting.

Commonly used forms

The important aspects include providing a self -explanatory title, size and proportion, color shades, necessary footnotes, source table and the index. The most commonly used graphical or diagrammatical forms for representation of data are: Pictograph Stem-and-Leaf Plot

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y y y y y y y Line graph Bar Graph Circle Graph Box and Whisker Plot Histogram Frequency polygon Ogive curve Pictograph This is a very common diagram used by advertisers in which appropriate pictures are drawn with sizes proportional to the magnitudes of the observations. Example of Pictograph The pictograph shows the number of varieties of apples stored at a supermarket. From the pictograph it can be understood that the number of Red Delicious apples stored is 30. .

Example of a Stem-and-Leaf plot: This stem-and-leaf plot shows the number of shrubs collected by each student The stem-and-leaf plot shows that two students have collected equal number of shrubs.Stem-and-Leaf Plot The stem-and-leaf plot is used to plot the frequency with which certain classes of values occur It is an arrangement used to display numerical data in order. . that is 21.

000. . months or years. which could be of any measure such as hours. Example of a Line graph: This line graph shows the circulation of a magazine (in thousands) in the first quarter of a year. days. weeks. In the second quarter of the year the circulation of the magazine was 100.Line graph This graph shows the data against time.

A bar graph is appropriate for comparing data in which observations corresponds to different categories.Bar graph A bar graph is a pictorial representation of numerical data. Example of a Bar graph: This bar graph displays the number of birthdays of students in each month. As per the bar graph. which makes use of a number of rectangular bars of uniform width with equa l spacing between them. birthday of 4 students fall in the month of February. .

Example of a Circle graph: This circle graph displays the annual expenditure of a software company The circle graph shows that the annual expenditure of the software company for education & training is $20 millions. .Circle graph (Pie chart) This graph is drawn using circle with areas proportional to the magnitudes of the observations. Circle graphs are generally used to represent data as a part of whole.

Example of a Box-and-Whisker plot: The following table shows the heights of mountains in U. median.S. lower quartile.Box-and-Whisker Plot Box-and-whisker plots depict the smallest observation. . upper quartile and largest observation of a given data. They even help in identifying the outlier of the given set of data.

Example of a Box-and-Whisker plot: The box-and-whisker plot for the given data is given below. Histogram The histogram is a graphical representation of a continuous frequency distribution in .

. From the graph. Example of a Histogram: This histogram indicates the number of employees of a company under different age groups. we can observe that the number of employees under the age group 20-24 is 5.which vertical rectangles are erected over the corresponding class intervals without leaving any gap amongst them.

Frequency polygon) Joining the midpoints of the rectangles of a histogram by stra ight lines makes a frequency polygon. . It shows the outline of a data pattern vividly. Example of a Frequency Polygon: This frequency polygon shows the fluctuation in points scored by a team in a basketball game.

The frequency polygon shows that the team had scored 3 points more frequently Ogive curve The curve drawn by plotting points with the upper (lower) boundaries of classes as X.coordinates and the corresponding less than (greater than) frequencies as Y-coordinates and joining t hese points by a smooth curve starting from (ending at) the lower (upper) bound of the first (last) class is called a less than (greater than) ogive. . These ogives enable us to know how many observations are above or below a certain value.

Example of Ogive curve: This ogive curve shows the distribution of the weekly wages (in $) of workers in a factory. . The ogive curve shows that the number of workers earning weekly more than $600 is 30.

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