Reply To: Discussion 4 (DTDS21)

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Sonnie Davies

I’ve encountered a few box and whisker plots only when meeting with statisticians, but I’ve seen them kind of hit a blank wall when presented to non-statisticians on the team. Histograms are more commonly presented in my experience to show a basic distribution of the data. But even then, histograms aren’t immediately recognizable in the way that my non-statistician PI’s usually want to see.

Since I joined a team of social scientists who have little background in quantitative data, I’ve started to present what little quant data we have in relation to other data. Presenting just values of data don’t seem to mean much, at least not to my team members. Since box and whisker plots and histograms are extremely useful for me to translate data though, they’ll probably be common on my analysis pages. But not the final dashboard.

The one exception I can think of would be a histogram (which is easier to understand immediately than box and whiskers) with a very explicit title describing what piece of data they’re supposed to get from the plot.