Scatter Plot Chart




Classification Code:



A scatter plot displays the relationship between two quantitative measures for different categories. Scatter plots are used to explore visually the potential existence, extent or absence of a significant relationship between the plotted variables. The display is formed by points (usually a dot or circle), representing each category and plotted positionally along quantitative x- and y-axes.

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​A scatter chart compares coffee sales to daily temperature.


Scatter Plot Chart

STEP 1: Guidance


STEP 1: Guidance

Mass data

A scatter plot may contain a considerable number of data points. It is not necessary to describe every data point (it is hoped that a data table is available) as this would create a very long, data-heavy and potentially confusing description. The description should convey the salient trends visible within the scatter plot data.

The description for a pie chart needs to reference the following data:

  • The title of the chart.

  • The structure of the chart (number of variables).

  • The variables being measured in the chart.

  • The range and average of data point(s) for each variable.

  • Trend analysis.

  • Outlier data may be highlighted if necessary.

The description should be ordered based on the trend analysis. What are the data telling the user in relation to the title of the scatter plot? This provides structure for the user by drawing out the salient conclusions from the data and improves understanding.

Tell the story of the chart. Provide ranges of data and averages to help understanding. If the exact data are not available, then estimate the values. If data are estimated, then state this within the description.

To assist with understanding, use commas instead of colons to create recognizable pauses for the screen reader user. The use of “equals” also helps attach the data points to the relevant variable.

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