Basic Types of Graphs in MS Excel

Basic Graphs

We use graph to represent data. This is both an artistic and viewer-friendly representation of numbers. By using graphs, we can easily show the relationship of each data we have gathered. Here are some of the most commonly used graphs:

  • Bar Graph or Column Chart
  • Line Graph
  • Scatter Plots
  • Pie Chart or Circle Graph
  • Box Plots

Line Graph

Scatter Plot

Graphs Explained

BAR GRAPH or COLUMN CHART - often used to display the amount or number of times a value occurs. It is useful when representing trends and when comparing data.

LINE GRAPH - is used to represent correlation. You can also use this type of graph to represent 80-20 rule or the Pareto principle.

SCATTER PLOTS - used to show trends in data. They are useful when there are large numbers of data points.

PIE CHART or CIRCLE GRAPH - can only represent only one variable at a time and does not use vertical or horizontal axis. The circle of pie chart represents 100%.

BOX PLOTS or BOX & WHISKERS DIAGRAM - useful in comparing distributions (bottom, median, and upper distribution).


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