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Box-and-Whisker Plots

Plotting the five-number summary for ascending data.

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Practice Box-and-Whisker Plots
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Weather Analysis

Credit: Chris Spannagle
Source: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Tornado_in_southwestern_Oklahoma_on_November_7,_2011.jpg
License: CC BY-NC 3.0

Do you prefer visual displays of data over reading tables full of numbers? Box-and-whisker plots are widely used in weather and climate analysis because of the additional features they convey easily.

Why It Is Important

The graphically compact nature of box and whisker plots facilitates side-by-side comparison of multiple datasets, which can otherwise be difficult to interpret.

Credit: Laura Guerin
Source: CK-12 Foundation
License: CC BY-NC 3.0

Box-and-whisker plots allow meteorologists and scientists to compare how temperature and precipitation vary differently during El Niño and La Niña conditions. They can serve as an important planning tool for engineers, farmers, outdoor recreational enthusiasts, and others with interests or professions dependent on the weather.

Read more about box-and-whisker plots and view examples of their use in representing temperature, precipitation, snow, and tornado data here:

http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/precip/CWlink/ENSO/box_whiskers/

http://www.weather.gov/btv/climoSnowDays

http://nationalatlas.gov/articles/mapping/a_statistics.html

Explore More

Learn more about the practical use of box-and-whisker plots with the following links.

http://www.fusioncharts.com/demos/gallery/#box-whisker-chart

http://www.lcgceurope.com/lcgceurope/data/articlestandard/lcgceurope/132005/152912/article.pdf

Image Attributions

  1. [1]^ Credit: Chris Spannagle; Source: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Tornado_in_southwestern_Oklahoma_on_November_7,_2011.jpg; License: CC BY-NC 3.0
  2. [2]^ Credit: Laura Guerin; Source: CK-12 Foundation; License: CC BY-NC 3.0

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