Graphical methods includes boxplots, stem and leaf plots scatter diagrams, pattern and trend analysis, histograms, normal probability distributions and Weibull distributions. This premium article for members only describes each of the effective ways to graphically represent data, maximizing it for information. Toward the end of this article, you’ll be able to download a handy guide/flowchart that provides helpful tips on what type of chart will be helpful, given the type of data that you have.

## The Boxplot

The boxplot is a number summary of the data. The data median is a line dividing the box. The upper and lower quartiles of the data define the ends of the box. The minimum and maximum data points are drawn as points at the end of lines (whiskers) extending from the box. Notches indicate variability of the median, and widths are proportional to the log of the sample size.

## Stem and Leaf Diagram

The stem-and-leaf diagram is a convenient, manual method for plotting data sets. The diagram consists of grouping the data by class intervals, as stems, and the smaller data increments as leaves.

View this example of a stem and leaf diagram.

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