How to Use Bar Graphs to Show Nominal Data

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Nominal data is data that doesn't have a numerical value, rather it is organized only by name. Find out how to use bar graphs to show nominal data with help from an experienced math professional in this free video clip.

Part of the Video Series: Math Skills
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Hi, I'm Drew Moyer, and this is how to use bar graphs to show nominal data. Nominal data is data that doesn't have a numerical value, rather it is organized only by name. However, in order to put this information into a bar graph, I'm going to have to assign it a numerical value. So, let's suppose that I'm a coach of a basketball team, and I wanna take inventory of how many players I have in each position. Well, since basketball positions are usually categorized by size, I can assign each position a number, based on it's size. I know I have a point guard, a shooting guard, a small forward, a power forward, and a center. Point guards are usually the smallest, so I will give that a number of one. Shooting guards are next, so I'll give them a two. Small forwards, after that, I'll give them a three. Then, power forwards, a four. And, finally, my tallest and biggest players are usually centers, so I'll give them a five. And, now that they have numerical values, I can represent them on the X axis, here. One is now standing for point guard. Two now stands for shooting guard. Three stands for small forward. Four stands for power forward, and five stands for center. So, now, all that's left to do is to graph the data. Let's say I have two point guards. All I would do is go over here to one, or point guard, and take my bar up to two for the number of players. Same thing for shooting guard, let's say I have three of those. So, I just come straight up to three, draw my bar, and color it in. For small forwards, let's say I only have one. So, I just go up to one, just like that, and color it in. Power forwards, for some reason, I have a lot of those, I have four. So, I take that up to four, color it in. And, last but not least, I have centers, and let's say I have two of those. So, I go across to two, make my bar, and now I have my bar graph. So, I'm Drew Moyer, and this is how to use bar graphs to show nominal data.

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