One of the nice things about technical writing courses is that most of the papers have graphics in them—or at least they should. A lot of professional, technical writing contains graphics—drawings, diagrams, photographs, illustrations of all sorts, tables, pie charts, bar charts, line graphs, flow charts, and so on. Graphics are important in technical communication. We learn more from a document when graphics are included (Gatlin, 1988). In fact, people learn about 1/3 more from a document with graphics than without (Levie and Lentz, 1982). A recent study found that readers learn faster and are better able to use the information they learn when the text includes graphics (Große,Jungmann, and Drechsler, 2015). That does not, of course, mean that one should place graphics willy-nilly into every spot possible. On the contrary, graphics should be used carefully and correctly. The information below will help you to make informed decisions regarding graphic creation and placement that will help to make your documents more effective for your readers. Chapter Objectives At the end of this chapter, students will be able to 1. Distinguish among tables, charts, and graphs 2. Identify chief characteristics of tables, charts, and graphs 3. Identify and apply best practices in creating tables, charts, and graphs in technical communication
McMurray, David and Powell, Tamara, "21. Tables, Charts, Graphs" (2016). Sexy Technical Communications. 21.