BUS5AP Analytics in Practice
Visualisation and storytelling
Good storytelling requires that our visuals are done properly. By that, it means that the visual is conveying facts correctly and is itself factual, and it does deliver the intended message to the audience. This is increasingly becoming important among employers and in some instances, visualisation questions are part of the interview process to ascertain your suitability as a data scientist hire.
In interview scenarios, the common kind of ‘test’ comes in the form of (i) asking you to comment on an existing/given visualisation or (ii) asking you to walk them through the process of graphing a small data set. The aim is to ensure that you not only understand analytics but also the art of communicating that to stakeholders effectively.
In this assignment, you will be asked to undertake three tasks related to the above.
1. The figure below is taken from a repository of “bad visualisations”.
• Comment what is wrong with this visual.
• Provide a visual to show how you would improve it.
2. You have been given a small data file containing different brands of cereals and their nutritional information. This file was provided to you by Kelloggs, which you can download from the LMS.
Kelloggs has asked you to produce suitable visualisation(s) and to suggest a narrative that will position Kelloggs’ products as one of the best to consider compared to the competitors.
• The various columns are self-explanatory except for Manufacturer, where the codes are as follows: G = General Mills, K = Kelloggs, N = Nabisco, P = Post, Q = Quaker Oats and R = Ralston Purina.
• The Type column here refers to whether the product is served hot or cold (H/C).
• Provide suitable visuals (maximum of three) and in no more than 250 words, provide a narrative that will accomplish the requirements above.
• You can approach this by considering Kelloggs as a brand, i.e., not focusing on a particular Kelloggs product, or highlight a particular product (or a few products) from Kelloggs.
3. Helen of Troy was known as “the face that launched a thousand ships.” Advisory engagements occasionally will have “the killer graphic” that allows stakeholders to engage with the concept.
At present, what is your “killer graphic”? Please:
• provide the visualisation
• articulate why you believe this to be the most compelling visualisation of your concept.
4. Edwin Tufte allegedly said, “Clutter and confusion are not attributes of data - they are shortcomings of design.” Please identify a visualisation that is particularly galling (offensive, annoying, you get my drift) to you. Please:
• Provide the visualisation
• Articulate why you find this visualisation such a good example of bad design
• Provide an alternative visualisation that demonstrates better practice.
Your submission for this assignment will be a report that walks the marker through your thought process and to explain the design decisions you have taken in respond to each question.
Please use the same submission principles as Assignment #1 (PDF, name/assignment/page number on each page, etc etc)
In terms of the tools used to create the visual, you are allowed to use any tool of your choice. We will only focus on your final visual.
Criteria Grade D (50% to 60%) C (60% to 69%) B (70%% to A (80% and
Q1 (5 marks), Some commentary of Some relevant Clearly commentary of Clearly articulated
commentary why this is a poor commentary of why why this is a poor commentary of why
visual. Some this is a poor visual. visual. Decent this is a poor visual.
consideration of Some consideration of consideration of Good consideration of
contexts but missing various contexts. various contexts. various contexts.
out of important ones.
Q1 (5 marks), Improvements made Improvements made Improvements made Improvements made
improved visual but linkage between with demonstration of with demonstration of with strong linkage
changes and some linkage between linkage between the between the changes
commentary is weak. the changes and the changes and the and the commentary
Some changes are commentary earlier. commentary earlier. earlier. Changes are
improvements but are Some changes are Most changes are indeed all
missing a few. indeed improvements. indeed improvements. improvements.
Q2 (3 marks), Ok but with room for A decent visual but Demonstrating Demonstrating good
visuals improvements. Close with room for understanding of understanding of
to average. improvements. Above creating a good visual. creating a good visual.
average. Clearly above average. Nothing much to fault.
Q2 (7 marks), An understandable A good narrative. Most A good narrative An articulated clear
narrative narrative but not of the points cuts provided within the narrative that stays
clearly compulsive. through and reflects 250 words. Most of within 250 words,
Some of the points the directive given by the points cuts precise to the point
cuts through. Some Kelloggs. Adaptation through and is on- and cuts through the
reflection of the of storytelling point with the message reflecting the
directive given by technique can be directive given by brief. A clear use of
Kelloggs. Some seen. Kelloggs. Adaptation one of the narratives is
indication of of storytelling demonstrated.
storytelling technique technique is
Q3 (10 marks) Poor visualisation A decent visual but Good visual that Very solid visual
Limited justification with room for demonstrates an supported by good
improvements. understanding of good rationale Nothing
Acceptable but not design. Good much to fault.
strong supporting supporting narrative.
Q4 (5 marks) Poor choice of Acceptable example Good example Good example of poor
example Acceptable but not Good critique design
Limited critique great critique Good alternative Good critique of the
example of bad design
Poor alternative Acceptable alternative
Very good alternative