Infographic of the Day II

Use the class rubric to analyze a new infographic.  Make sure to indicate where you found the infographic (include the link) and give an overall assessment of how effective you think the infographic is.

Rubric for Effective Infographics

In class we reviewed a long list of characteristics of effective infographics, which were summarized in the blog entries in Part I of that activity.  From those summaries four main categories were identified: Usefullness, Legibility, Design and Aesthetics.  Students worked in groups to define the qualities or attributes of these categories.  The results for the two classes appear as comments to this post.

Infographic of the Day I

Describe the infographic and where you found it (include a link). What data is provided in the infographic, who is the intended audience, what is its purpose and to which family of graphs does it belong?  Explain your answers.  What are “two stories” for your infographic  – one broad and one specific?  Describe the infographic using the LATCH and AIDA communication strategies.  Do you think the infographic is effective?  Explain your answer.

Characteristics of Effective Infographics Activity III

Should our class rubric include only subjective criteria, only objective criteria or a combination of both?  Should we decide on a set of criteria where anyone using our criteria will evaluate an infographic in the same way?  Explain your answers.  Each person will complete a blog posting for their response.

Characteristics of Effective Infographics Activity II

Using the same list of characteristics from Activity I identify attributes that you feel have a subjective component, that is two people might look at the same infographic and have different impressions about how well it meets that attribute, and ones that you feel can be evaluated objectively.  (Note that this activity is very subjective.)

Characteristics of Effective Infographics Activity I

The following list of attributes is from your Rubric papers.  Try to identify categories for the attributes that consist of related characteristics.  This will help us to decide on a final set of attributes for our class rubric.  Try to create categories so that all of the characteristics are included in a category and no characteristic is in a category by itself.

  • Informative – audience learns something
  • Easy to read
  • Easy to understand
  • Interesting
  • Uses quality data
  • Has a point of view
  • Manageable amounts of info
  • Easily distinguishable and comparable data
  • Good use of contrast
  • Clear labeling
  • Created for a reason
  • Appropriate visual methods
  • Not wasting space
  • Black and white factor
  • Avoid information overload
  • Key identification
  • Data dense
  • Use of axis labels and scales
  • Vertical or horizontal organization
  • Use of color
  • Data in chunks
  • Appropriate for intended audience
  • No distortion of data
  • Legibility
  • Space management
  • Visibility across different mediums
  • Simple and organized
  • No chart junk
  • Visually pleasing
  • Grab viewer’s attention
  • Balance between amount and size of text
  • For a general audience
  • Consistency of content
  • Accuracy
  • Encourages comparisons
  • Clear purpose
  • Creative
  • Engaging
  • Appropriate size
  • Meaningful story
  • Functional – effectively portrays the data
  • Miller’s magic number
  • Use of realism
  • Use of noticeable differences in size
  • Appropriate use of fonts
  • Display what is relevant
  • Use of pictures

Information Design Case Studies

For the case study assigned to your group analyze the artifacts provided in the text usin the topics we have discussed in class. Things to consider inclued:

Purpose, audience and data



Font usage

Color usage



Make sure to indicate which infographic (including page numbers) your group analyzed.

Visual Communications Myths Activity

From the “” website:

Myth #1: People spend more time reading when type is large.

Myth #3: Realism is best when you’re explaining things.

Myth #5: People are generally aware of typeface. 

Consider the infographics we have looked at so far and how they have or have not considered these myths.  Find three example infographics where the size of the type, the typeface or the use of realism either helped to make the infographic effective or interfered with its effectiveness.  How might these myths help toward determining our class “effective infographics” rubric?

Two Stories Activity

For each of the infographics below, identify  “two stories” following the discussion on pages 68 and 69 of our text.  First, make a general statement; that is, provide a broad overview of what the graph is about using “pattern perception.”  Look for trends or an underlying pattern. Second, provide some specific details, using the “table lookup” process.  Give at least one specific detail using the legend or scales to assign value or make a comparison.  One member of each group will do a “report out” at the next class.  Another will do a blog post. For the report and blog choose two of the infographics to discuss.

Cognitive Principles Assignment

Cognitive Principles Assignment                        Blog entry due by class time on Wednesday Sept. 28

Among the infographics found on David McCandless’s website find examples that demonstrate the following cognitive principles from our text:

Miller’s Magic Number, or chunking

 Weber’s Law of Just Noticeable Difference

 The Gestalt Principles of Perception

 Information Overload

 For this activity you must discuss four different infographics.  These infographics must demonstrate (or fail to demonstrate) two of the four principles listed above.  For each principle explain how your selected infographic does (or does not) demonstrate that principle.
Here is his main website:

 Here is a link that has a nice collection of infographics: