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Multiple variables graphs

Command: Graphs
Next selectMultiple variables graphs


Creates graphs that allow to compare different variables, i.e. data entered in different columns of the spreadsheet.

The graph can be composed from different elements: Bars, Horizontal lines, Markers and or Connecting lines for mean or median, with choice of different error bars for mean (95% CI, 1 SEM, 1 SD, 2 SD, 3 SD, range) or median (95% CI, 25-75 percentiles, 10-90 percentiles, 5-95 percentiles, 2.5-97.5 percentiles, 1-99 percentiles, range), Box-and-whisker plot (Tukey, 1977) or Notched box-and-whisker plot (McGill et al., 1978), and/or Dot plot (display all data) (for a see full description see Data comparison graphs).

Required input

In the dialog box, you can enter the different variables of interest, followed by one filter to include only a selected subgroup of cases in the graph. Next select the different elements of the graph (bars, error bars, box-and-whisker plot, etc., described elsewhere.

Multiple variables graph - dialog box

You can select the Logarithmic transformation option, or the option to include only complete cases in the graph. If the latter option is selected, only cases with valid numerical data for all variables entered in the dialog box will be included in the graph.

In addition to the graphical elements as for Data comparison graphs, the Multiple variables graphs also includes the multiple Dot and line diagram and Cumulative frequency distribution.

In the Dot and line diagram (or Ladder plot), all observations are plotted as individual dots, and observations from the different cases (rows in the spreadsheet) are connected by a line.

Multiple variables graph - Ladder plot

The option Cumulative frequency distribution cannot be combined with any of the previous graph types.


  • Altman DG (1991) Practical statistics for medical research. London: Chapman and Hall. Buy from Amazon
  • McGill R, Tukey JW, Larsen WA (1978) Variations of box plots. The American Statistician, 32, 12-16.
  • Tukey JW (1977) Exploratory data analysis. Reading, Mass: Addison-Wesley Publishing Company. Buy from Amazon

See also

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