Types of Graphs to Use to Represent Statistics
Some of the most common types of graphs used in statistics are
Hi, I’m Ben Owens. I’m a math educator, here for About.com. Statistics is all about gathering and presenting data so I’m going to show you some of the most common types of graphs we can use to show that data. First off, we have the Bar Graph. A bar graph contains one bar for each set of Qualitative data, measured by the quality not the quantity. The bars are arranged in order of frequency, so that more important categories are emphasized.Next is the Pie Chart. Each slice of pie represents a different category. The larger the slice, the more frequent. If those don’t work, you can also use a Histogram, another kind of graph that looks a lot like a bar graph, but this type of graph is used with quantitative data. Ranges of values, called classes (or bins), are listed at the bottom, and the classes with greater frequencies have taller bars. There’s also Stem and Leaf Plot graph. A stem and leaf plot breaks each value of a quantitative data set into two pieces, a stem, typically for the highest place value, and a leaf for the other place values. It provides a way to list all data values in a compact form. You can also use a Dot Plot graph instead. A dot plot is a hybrid between a histogram and a stem and leaf plot. Each quantitative data value becomes a dot or point that is placed above the appropriate class values. There are also Scatter Plot charts.A scatterplot displays data that is paired by using a horizontal axis (the x axis), and a vertical axis (the y axis). The statistical tools of correlation and regression are then used to show trends on the scatterplot. And finally there are Time-Series Graphs. A time-series graph displays data at different points in time, so it is another kind of graph to be used for certain kinds of paired data. The horizontal axis shows the time and the vertical axis is for the data values. These kinds of graphs can be used to show trends as time progresses. As you can tell - there are lots of graphs to show data and there are even more out there - so it’s all about using the right one for your case. For more on math, visit education.about.com. Thanks for watching!