Graphing. We often describe of a graph as a plot of A versus B. This
means that A is plotted on the y axis and that B is plotted on the x
axis. Generally the quantity plotted on the y axis is also the dependent
variable and that on the x axis is the independent variable—that the
value of A is dependent on B. Thus in the experiment we would vary B and then
measure A as a function of B.
following example is a graph of count rate versus time.
A graph has a main title
which describes what it is a graph of. In this
example it is a graph of “Count Rate Versus Time”. Each axis also has a
which describes what is plotted on that axis AND the units of the
quantities on the labels. In this example the y
axis is “Count Rate” in
units of “s−1
”. The x
axis is “Time” in units of “s”. Tick
on the axes show uniform intervals. The tick marks are labeled
with the values. The data points are plotted on the graph as symbols
this example the data points are represented by open circles. The value
corresponding to the data is in the center of the symbol. The line
best fits the experimental data is also plotted on the same graph with the
symbols so that the correlation and scatter of the experimental data point can
be easily seen.
Each graph must have the following components:
- The correct quantities plotted
and on the correct axes.
- A main title.
- Both axes must have titles with
- Both axes must have tick marks
- The data are plotted as
- The best fit line obtained by
linear regression is plotted as a line.
Graphs that to
not fulfill these basic requirements will not be accepted.
This work by L.A. Bumm is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.