DATA
VISUALIZATION 101

How to choose the right chart?

1

Identify your question

By clarifying your question first, you'll be able to validate charts effectively, and perhaps find a better chart you'd never considered.

Identify the columns you can use to address your questions, and label them with their respective data types

2

Identify and label your column data types

3

Match your question and data types to charts

With a clear question and knowledge of your data types, you're ready to select multiple charts.

Choosing the right chart

Pie chart

Use when:

1. You have a small number of categories (2-8)

2. Categories are all parts of a larger whole, and no category is missing

3. You need only to make rough comparisons

Histogram

Use when:

1. Asking high level questions of a single column: Are all values similar? 

2. Used in comparison with other histograms

Scatter plot

Use when:

1. You want to find or show a clear relationship between two numeric columns

2. You have a small to large amount of data points

you want to spot outliers

Line Chart

Use when:

1. You have the same data points recorded many time across many time points

2. You have 3-8 categories over time you want to compare

Bar Chart

Use when:

1. You want to find or show a clear relationship between two numeric columns

2. You have a small to large amount of data points

you want to spot outliers

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