January 15, 2012

Visualizing Data

Infographics are graphic visual representations of information, data or knowledge. Understanding data can be challenging, especially when dealing with volumes of information. Data visualizations allows the viewer to see the concepts they are learning about in a more interesting, consise, and often more useful manner. To learn how to create infographics with students, download the flyer (.pdf) or watch the video.

Infographic Format Ideas

  • Timelines
  • Flow charts
  • Annotated maps
  • Graphs
  • Venn diagrams
  • Size comparisons
  • Showing familiar objects or similar size or value

 Steps for Creating An Infographic

Click here for the Steps for Creating An Infographic (.pdf)

  • Decide on Focus for the Infographic
    1. What message do you want to communicate in an engaging way?
    2. How will you present large amounts of data meaningfully?
  • Storyboard – Layout the placement of the data and images to ensure the infographic will be concise, visual, and attractive.
  • Data Manage – Create visual representations which best suits your data (charts, tables, graphs, scatter plots, etc.).
  • Image Manage – Collect copyright-free icons and images which will enhance your data.
  • Citation – List sources for icons, images and data which will be used in the infographic.
  • Infographic Construction – Build the infographic.
  • Assess Against Co-Constructed Criteria – Revise if necessary.



Manage Data – Where to Get Visual Statistics

  • Chart Chooser – Download exisiting visualizations into Excel and modify to suit your data.
  • Chartle – Create, embed and share your charts, plots, diagrams and maps online.
  • Chartsbin – Download or embed existing visualizations, including maps, pie charts and bar charts, all of which are available under creative commons. Sign up for a free account to create visualizations using your own data. Copy and paste your data from a .csv file, and then create a map-based visualization of that data.
  • Create visually rich infographics from pre-designed themes. It is very easy to use and only drag and drop.

  • Excel – Microsoft’s spreadsheet software.
  • GapMinder is a free Adobe Air (cross-platform by nature) application that has current data on major world issues.
  • Google’s Public Data Explorer has visual, and extremely varied statistics. The data can be presented as a line chart, bar chart, or graph. The visualizations cannot be saved, so a screenshot of the data must be taken.
  • Hohli Create Venn diagrams and other charts, including scatter plots and other line charts.
  • Info.gram – Create, share, discover infographics and online charts.
  • Inkspace – A free infographic creation tool which allows visualizations to be imported and combined with other visuals. It requires download.>
  • Many Eyes  –  Build simple interactive graphics with this free online tool from IBM.

  • StatPlanet Map Builder
  • Tableau –  Create interactive visualisations with colourful and unique themes. Share  with others or embed in a web sites. Works just on Windows. 
  • Google Docs  – Enter data directly into the spreadsheet and convert it into a visualization including bar charts, pie charts, heat maps and more. Follow the instructions.

Manage Images – Where to Get Icons and Images

Cite Sources – How To Source Information and Images

Build Infographic – How to Create the Final Product

Once you have all your various elements, the text, graphics and visualizations need to be placed into one image. This can be done with a variety of programs:

 10 Tips for Designing Infographics – a very informative link

Print Inforgraphics

Infographics can be great posters to display. Richard Byrne describes an easy way to print the infographics poster-sized.


Examples of Infographics:



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