Presentation on theme: "Results: Tables and Figures. Tables and Figures When to use what? Text: for simple results E.g. Seed production was higher for plants in the full-sun."— Presentation transcript:
Tables and Figures When to use what? Text: for simple results E.g. Seed production was higher for plants in the full-sun treatment (F=2.34 g, P<0.05) than for those receiving filtered light.
Figures and Tables Use graphs and tables to present your results, and then summarize the important trends Do not put everything in a table or figure, only what is important to your hypothesis Not all results should go in a table; simple result are best stated in a single sentence.
When to use what…contd Tables - do not use tables when you want to show a trend or a pattern of a relationship between two variables (best in a figure) E.g. If you need to present population sizes and sex ratios for an organism over time and you want to show differences among sample times according to habitat type, a table would be best. However, if you wanted to show a relationship between sex ratio and habitat type, then a figure would be better.
When to use what…contd Figures - visual presentations of results and includes graphs, diagrams, photos, drawings, schematics, maps, etc. - graphs are the most common type of figure
Referring to figures & tables Every figure and table must be referred to in the text. Figures or tables can be referred to in full or in brackets. E.g. As shown in Table 1, the mean sample weights of Douglas Fir fine roots were significantly different from those of Pine spp. in all locations. OR The mean sample weights of Douglas Fir fine roots were significantly different from those of Pine spp. in all locations (Table 1).
Referring to tables & figures Use sentences that draw the readers attention to the relationship, trend or significant differences that you want to highlight. e.g. DNA sequence homologies for the purple gene from the four congeners (Table 1) show high similarity, differing by at most four base pairs.
Referring to tables & figures Avoid sentences that give no important information other than directing the reader to the table or figure. E.g. Table 1 shows the statistical analyses for male and female heights in the township.
Figures/tables language Common verbs: shows, provides, gives, indicates, illustrates, presents, summarizes, etc. Common phrases: As shown in Figure 3,.... As illustrated by the relationship in Figure 2,..... Usually present – active or passive e.g. Table 5 shows soil lead concentrations. OR Soil lead concentrations are shown in Table 5.
Figures/tables - language Commentary can be indicative or informative e.g. Table 5 shows soil lead concentrations. OR Table 5 shows that soil lead concentrations are highest in the top 5 cm.
The perfect table/figure How do you know? 1.The data points should be clear in a figure; tables should not be cluttered with data. 2.Figures should be well-labelled. 3.The legend/caption should be descriptive enough that it should stand alone (i.e. the reader should understand without reading the results section) 4.Strive for simplicity! You dont want to lose the reader.
A word about captions Like a title of an article, a caption/legend should: 1.Indicate what results are being shown 2.What treatments were applied/relationship shown 3.Additional explanatory information to interpret data (e.g. footnotes, significance values) 4.Parameters of the experiment if applicable 5.Sample sizes and statistical tests if applicable
A word about captions….contd E.g. Figure 1. Figure 1. Height frequency (%) of White Pines (Pinus strobus) in the Thorncrag Bird Sanctuary, Lewiston, Maine, before and after the Ice Storm of '98. Before, n=137, after, n=133. Four trees fell during the storm and were excluded from the post-storm survey.
A few more notes about figures Always include error bars (either SD or SEM) when plotting means; sometimes CIs are appropriate. Use major tick values, then minor interval ticks in logical units (e.g. if major interval is 10, then you can have minor intervals of 2 or 5)
Consider different types of figures 1.Compound figures – multiple graphs that are related with a common caption. 2.Bar graph – used to compare the value of a single variable among several groups
Types of figures 3. Frequency histogram – show how measured individuals are distributed along an axis of the measure variable; commonly used to describe populations
Types of graphs 4. X, Y graphs –usually used to show a relationship; regression analysis
Your turn…. 1.Analyze the tables and figures in the sample manuscripts to determine if they are well- done. 2.Use the rules and the sample manuscripts to look at your/your neighbours tables and figures.