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Data Handling

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We know that data is a collection of observations. Visual representation of data will help us to understand it better and remember the facts easily.

The word ‘data’ means collection of information in the form of numerical figures, or a set of given facts.


  • The marks obtained by 10 students of a class in a test are:
    76, 83, 95, 100, 56, 32, 80, 67, 75, 46
  • The following table gives the data regarding the favourite game of 100 students of a school:
Sports Cricket Football Tennis Badminton
Number Of Students 40 30 25 5

When some information is collected and presented randomly, then it is called raw data. A data classified into groups is called grouped data.

Data in raw form can be represented in the form of pictures and diagrams. It makes the given data attractive to the observer. Also, it is easy to understand and to compare it with other information.

Some commonly used diagrams to represent numerical data are:

  • Pictographs
  • Bar graph
  • Double bar graph
  • Pie-diagrams or Pie-charts

Pictographs represent data through appropriate pictures. In pictographs, the same type of symbol or picture is used to represent the data. Each symbol is used to represent a certain value, and this is mentioned clearly in the graph. For example, one symbol may represent 25 students.

The following pictograph represents the number of students coming to a college by different means of transport:

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A representation of data with the help of bars or rectangles in a diagram is called a bar graph or a bar diagram.

Here, each bar represents only one value of the data, and hence, there are as many bars as the number of values in the data. The length or height of a bar indicates the value of the item. The width of a bar and the gap between the bars is kept uniform to make the diagram look neat.

The following bar graph represents the production of rice in different years:

bar graph, bars or rectangles, bar diagram, representation of data, length of height of the bar, width of the bar, gap between the bars

Sometimes, organising data becomes a tedious process. In such cases, we group the raw data. We write the groups as intervals. Each group is called a class interval. The class interval will have a lower class limit and an upper class limit.

The difference between the upper class limit and the lower class limit is called the width or size of the class interval. The number of times a particular item appears within a particular class interval is called frequency.

The span of a class interval is called the width or size of the class interval.

We fill up the rows with tally marks and will count the total number of tally marks in each group. The number of tally marks in each group is listed in the frequency column. The completed table is called the frequency distribution table. With the data in a table, we can draw a graph.

class interval, frequency, width or size , class interval, frequency distribution table

A graph showing two sets of data simultaneously is called a double bar graph. It is useful for comparing two sets of data.

The following graph shows the strength of boys and girls in a school in different years:

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A pie diagram or a pie chart is a circle divided into several sectors. The circle represents the total value of the given data, and the sectors represent the proportion of the components of the total.

It is also called an angular diagram or a circular diagram.

The monthly expenditure on various items of a family is given below.

Item Food House Rent. Misc. School Fees
Amount Spent Rs. 2500 Rs. 2700 Rs. 2400 Rs. 1400

Its representation in a pie diagram is as shown.

pie diagram, pie-chart, representation of data, sector, circle, angular diagram, circular diagram

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