HIS 218
Unit 12: Data Visualization

A stone-tower with a bit of a lean to it. Photo courtesy Jambaar Stills.
Blue Separator Bar

Short introduction

We are going to explore here a potentially very important tool for historians, data visualization (DV). In DV, statistics/data are displayed in a visual format that allows for easier recognition and interpretation of historical patterns. There are some digital tools available on the web that allow DV, but in many cases you still have to know some coding to make a web-based DV.

What you must do in this unit


  • Post on your blog (5 points): (a) suggestions of at least two online data sets, particularly relating to Virginia history if possible, that can be used for a data visualization project; and (b) a visualization that you have found on the web and why you find it interesting. Please let me know in Canvas when you have posted so that I can grade.
  • Post on your blog (5 points) a short critique and some comments about the story maps created by the other students in the course. You will find the URLs in the Canvas discussion board.

Extra credit options

  • Please suggest any online materials relevant to this unit of the course.

Unit learning objectives

  • Upon successful completion of this unit, you will be able to (1) understand the principles of data visualization and (2) manipulate and interpret historical data and statistics using a visualization tool.

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