CHEST Medical Writing Tips of the Month:007 いいグラフを作るための2つのルール


Figure 1. A really terrible graph of four values that should not be shown in a graph at all.



Two rules of good graphs are presented and explicated.

(CHEST 2006; 130:620-621)


I am at a loss for words. I did not expect that looking through recent issues of CHEST would cause both relief and disappointment. Relief, because the topic this month is still relevant. The need for advice about graphs is as strong now as at any time in at least 2 decades. Disappointment, for the same reason: newly published medical literature still has far too many graphs that are unnecessary, distracting, difficult to decipher, and sometimes even deceptive. At the risk of oversimplification, I suggest that there are two rules of good graphs.

→ 著者は相当がっかりしているらしい。そして、わかりやすいグラフを作成するポイント(2つだけ!)を教えてくれるという。

First, a good graph shows data that deserve to be graphed. It displays or reveals relations or patterns that would be hard to grasp if the data were shown in running text or in a table.


Second, a good graph succinctly emphasizes the data, not the graph itself. Just as good writing has no needless words,1 good graphs have no distracting lines or other needless marks of any kind.



『How to Report Statistics in Medicine』

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