How to Display Data in a Graph
A good graph has several important characteristics:
A descriptive title.
Label both axes including units.
Independent variable on the x axis.
Dependent variable on the y axis.
Use majority of paper for plotting data.
Plot points using different symbols if more than one trial on graph.
Here is an example of a good graph.
Time vs. Height for a Parachute
1 y = 0.9555x - 0.27
0 R2 = 0.9933
0 2 4 6 8 10
Here is an example of a bad data graph
Looking at the bad data table above, circle and identify at least 10 problems.
Height vs Time. for a Parachute
0 2 4 6 8 10
Refer to the example problem involving the parachute testing. Create a four column data table where the
first column contains the students’ names, the second column contains the measured height in centimeters,
the third column contains the measured height in inches, the fourth contains a ratio of centimeters to inches.
Use the following data: Henry- 186.00 cm, 71.00 in; Olive- 167.70 cm, 66.00 in; Jenn- 132.1 cm, 52.00 in;
Nicole- 191.00 cm, 74.00 in.
Then create a graph comparing centimeters and inches for each person. Centimeters should go on the
y-axis and inches on the x-axis. Find the slope of the line. What does the slope tell you?