Creating data visualisations

Creating and presenting data effectively is a key strategy to engage your primary stakeholders or intended users. Data visualisations are graphical representations of information and provide an accessible way to understand and make sense of research findings quickly. Data visualisations also help to tell stories and sort data into easy to understand forms. For example, histomaps are an interesting data visualisation that can be used to chart qualitative data over time. They can be made creating and pivoting a line chart in Microsoft Excel.

Data dashboards

Data dashboards are a data visualisation tool often used to monitor and visually track key indicators and measures. They are the most efficient way to track multiple data sources at a time. There are many different types of data dashboard software available as well as online and face to face courses. For an example see the data dashboard created by Preventing Violence Together partnership.

Example software used for creating data dashboards include:

For more information on data visualisation see the following websites:

  • Evergreen Data - Stephanie Evergreen is a leader in data visualisation and offers online courses.
  • Depict Data Studios - offers a range of free or affordable training in creating and telling stories with data visualisation.
  • Visualising Data - contains data visualisation and infographic inspiration, as well as online training.


Infographics are another method for translating information and delivering key messages in a concise and visual way. Infographics can be static, interactive or animated.

Free or affordable software programs are available online when you want to create your own or don't have the budget for designers. For example, Piktochart or Canva are commonly used online design software.