Written for students, professionals, and social scientists with little or no knowledge of data visualization principles, this complete guide presents step-by-step instructions for clearly and effectively presenting data using MS Office programs. Throughout the book, the focus is on turning raw, quantitative data into attractive, well-designed charts and tables that tell an accurate narrative about underlying information. Helpful illustrations, expert tips for solving common issues, and discussions on working efficiently are included to equip readers with the tools they need to engage their audience using a visual format.

Line and Area Charts

Learning Objectives

  • Identify when to use line and area charts
  • Create line charts to plot trend data
  • Produce multiseries line and area charts
  • Identify best practices for creating line and area charts

Line charts are used to illustrate continuous data such as time series, age, health factors in a population, temperature, and so on. As their name suggests, line charts contain lines drawn parallel to the chart’s x-axis. The line connects data values along the chart’s x-axis, thus effectively illustrating patterns of change (or lack thereof) from one time period to the next. For example, the line chart in Figure 3.1 shows increasing and decreasing TV viewership of the Super Bowl in the United States, until 2006 when viewership began to increase steadily. Multiple lines ...

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