Session Objectives and Transferable Skills

  • To be introduced to the R Universe, in particular the tidyverse and ggplot2
  • To understand the benefits of using different plotting methods (ggplot2 vs plot).
  • To use business data to generate clear data visualisations.
  • Basic introduction to the use of R and the tidyverse
  • Basic visualisation techniques using ggplot2
  • Understanding data visualisation techniques and good practice.
  • Creative problem solving and debugging


  • Introduction (5 minutes)
  • Part 1: (40 minutes)
    • Introduction Good Practice for Graph Production
    • Compartive Plotting, ggplot2 vs plot
    • Introduction to Scatter plots in ggplot2
  • Break (5 minutes)
  • Part 2: (35 minutes)
    • Introduction to Bar Charts, Histograms
    • Layering ggplot2 components (density plots)
    • Saving and Exporting Visualisations
  • Review and Conclusion (5 minutes)

Importance of Data Visualisation in Business

  • Clear, Concise and Accurate communication of key messages
  • Business is data and statistically driven in the age of big data

Part 1

Good Practice for Graph Production

  • Current theory is based on principles from Tufte
  • These can be summerized as:
    • Ask how data maps to perception
    • Ask which comparisons you want, guide eye to those
    • Maximize data-to-ink ratio
    • Present the most data (without losing interpretability)
    • Remember to use levels of detail and ensure a narrative is included

Bad Practice vs Good Practice