Tables Gives order and coherence to data –Presents data in more concise and readable form than using sentences and paragraphs –Keeps data from being tediously repetitive –Stresses relationships among pieces of data visually by arranging related facts in the same column or under sameheading
Tables 2 Types of tables –Informal: two or more columns, with or without headings, often untitled, integrated into text –formal: used for formal reports, lined or boxed to separate them from text, numbered consecutively, titled, set up with specific format
“Nuke” Movies’ Characteristics MoviesThem!FailsafeThe Core Mutations From radia- tion YNN World could End YYY Nuke will save world NYY
Stylistic Conventions Label each table (Table 1. Terms and abbreviations) Create a separate TOC for visuals If from outside source, list source either after title in parentheses or in a parenthetical citation in text Include annotations (explanations of any part of table) if necessary
Stylistic Conventions 2 Point to details in tables of particular interest Give background information on table contents to tell audience what results mean or to indicate comparisons/contrasts, trends
Placement Place tables (true also for figures) as close as possible to the discussion they underscore. –At end of sentence or paragraph that refers to table for first time –At bottom of page where table is first referred to –On following page without text
Page Design Surround table with enough white space to keep page from looking cluttered. Depending on size, tables may be placed vertically or horizontally on page Keep tables to 1 page unless absolutely necessary to use 2 pages. If so, repeat headings, and take subtotals if necessary
Figures Drawings –Unnecessary parts of item can be deleted –Use to emphasize particular attributes of object: size, shape, color, texture, interior as well as exterior
Figures 2 Diagrams (maps, charts), –Show only most important exterior or interior views of object –Often demand some technical expertise from audience because they show relationships and operating principles –May need an explanation to make them clear to readers without that expertise. Arrows to show directions or labels may be sufficient
Figures 3 Types of diagrams –Cross section: shows interior from point of view of object sliced in half vertically –Exploded: separates the parts of a subject so that each part can be seen clearly.
Mayflower Cross Section diagram.htm
Skeleton Exploded Diagram
Figures 4 Graphs: set of points on coordinate axes with lines connecting those points –Clearly label each axis –Use color if graph has many lines Bar charts: display numerical quantities in horizontal or vertical bars – Arrange bars in order that makes most sense for your report (descending order of importance, for instance)
Typical Device Calibration Graph aph1.gif
Figures 5 Pie charts: segmented circle for dividing a whole, usually monetary (U.S. budget); good for non-tech audience Flowcharts: show sequence and direction, accompanying descriptions of processes Organization charts: show hierarchies-- lines and levels of responsibility
Flowchart Flow Chart
Organization Chart City of Westminster Organization Chart
Figures 6 Photographs –Accurately record surfaces of objects –Crop them to eliminate unnecessary background detail –Can label them underneath or on photo –Disadvantage is that they show only surface features
Uses for Figures Never say with words what you can say with pictures. If data is quantitative or pictorial, figures will express it better than words. Most people find pictures easier to understand, and retain information longer. Graphics heighten readers' interest and increase clarity of reports.
Uses 2 Whether you use visuals depends on your topic and type of report. –For a process manual, use a drawing that shows one of the steps in the process (connecting the timer in a bomb). –Graphs or pie or bar charts show what has happened over time: graphs can show how business at a particular branch has fallen in the last six months. –Pie charts show how an item is divided. –Diagrams supplement your description of an item.