Assignment: Visual Aid and Data Summary

Assignment: Visual Aid and Data Summary

Prompt: Choose a table from the ProQuest Statistical Abstract of the U.S. 2017 Online Edition. Here are a few suggested tables from Section 30: International Statistics.

  • Table 1355: Health Expenditures by Country: 1990 to 2016 [Selected Years]

  • Table 1369: Household Tax Burden by Country: 2016

  • Table 1386: Net Electricity Generation by Energy Source and Country: 2014

The above tables are only suggestions. Feel free to choose any table you are interested in from the Statistical Abstract.

There are two parts to this assignment.

1) Use words to summarize (in 1-2 double-spaced pages) the data displayed in your table. Your audience is a business executive or policy maker who wants to know about patterns, relationships, or trends in the data, but does not have the time to examine the table herself.

Members of a group can either work independently or examine the same table as others in their group. While you may brainstorm and discuss any possible patterns you identify with your group, every student must turn in their own work. All writing must be individually completed. If your group discovers a pattern together, each of you must write about this pattern in your own words. If your group decides to collaborate during the “thinking” phase of this exercise, each student in the group must indicate this and the names of collaborating group members on the work she turns in.

Example: “Lucas Kim, Discussed in class with Randall Christopher, Susane Lee, and Dan Sisti.”

2) Use the “Download” button on the top right corner of the table’s webpage to download a spreadsheet with the raw numbers from the table. Create a chart demonstrating a pattern, relationship, or trend from the table you are describing. Your audience is a policymaker or business executive to whom you would like to explain the fact. This person does not have time to dissect the table, or read the written summary of the table you prepared in Part 1) of the assignment.

Your chart should be easy to understand and be able to stand alone as a visual aid object. A stranger who happens to come across the chart (with no supplemental text) should be able to understand the fact your chart demonstrates with no further explanation. Be sure to cite the source of the data.