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Methods in data visualization have rapidly advanced over the past decade. While regularly needing to visualize the results of their analyses, social scientists receive little training in how to best design their visualizations. This tutorial is for individuals whose goal is to communicate patterns in data as clearly as possible to other consumers of science, and is designed to be accessible to both experienced and relatively new users of R and ggplot2. It does assume some basic statistical and visualization knowledge, focusing on how to visualize rather than what to visualize. We distill the science and wisdom of data visualization expertise from books, blogs, and online forum discussion threads into recommendations for social scientists looking to convey their results to other scientists. Overarching design philosophies and color decisions are discussed before giving specific examples of code in R for visualizing central tendencies, proportions, and relationships between variables.
CC-By Attribution 4.0 International