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Bruno

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Posts: 3
Reply with quote  #1 
Hi there
I'm currently developing a dashboard about student evaluations on different Ph.D. courses at our University. The data behind the dashboard are from an online questionaire where the students answers 4 different questions - each question with a number from 1-5 (as the level of satisfaction where 5 is the highest level).

In my dashboard I wan't to show the level of satisfaction on each course as a bar compared to all the other courses (the user's chosen course is dark, the rest are light gray). However I'm in doubt what how to set the zero-value.

I allways design my barcharts so the y-axis start at 0 but in this particular case the student can only answer a value from 1-5 - meaning that 1 is the absolute lowest value.

So - should I start my Y-axis at 1 (attachment "Forum - barchart") or at 0 (attachment "Forum - barchart 2")

Thanks in advance

Cheers
Bruno

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jlbriggs

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Posts: 194
Reply with quote  #2 
Simple solution: use a dot plot instead of a bar chart. Scale your axis from 1 to 5.
Bruno

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Posts: 3
Reply with quote  #3 
Hi there

Thanks for your reply - nice of you to take the time to answer my question :) However I would really like to do the chart with bars and not symbols since it's much easier til pinpoint the course the user is comparing with the other courses.

I've actually developed a similar dashboard on our Bachelor- and Master courses at the University, the only difference is that the students answer on a scale from 0-100 (%). In this dashboard I used a barchart and I think it workes good. I tried to do it with symbols, but I don't think it's quite as effective (I attached both charts underneath).

Therefore, if you have a solution to the original barchart problem it would be perfect :)

Cheers

Bruno  
 

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jlbriggs

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Posts: 194
Reply with quote  #4 
It appears we can agree that your example of the dot plot does not work very well for the intended purpose.

But with the right set up, I think it can work very well (quick dirty sketch):

chart(5).png 
To me, it's as simple as this: if the scale shouldn't start at 0, it shouldn't be a bar chart. If it has to be a bar chart, the scale should start at 0

It is a philosophical question perhaps, whether in this case 1 counts as 0.
I don't have a good answer. I can see an argument for it, and it would be more proportionally accurate to display the bars that way than to show an extra unit that doesn't count.

But I would still skip it and make a dot plot in this case :)

Bruno

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Posts: 3
Reply with quote  #5 

Hi again

I see your point now - I think your redesigned version of the chart is better and I'll go with that in my Dashboard.

Thanks a lot for your help :)

Cheers
Bruno

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