Today’s post looks at education across a set of 65 countries from a standardised test backed by the OECD, basically a group of wealthy countries. The test results found that some poor countries have surprisingly good education systems whereas some of the world’s wealthiest countries—here’s looking at you, United States—perform poorly. The Huffington Post created this graphic to plot the data.
I really enjoy this piece. It plots each income decile’s results, blocks the countries into OECD members versus their partners, and then each country’s average socioeconomic status is shown as being above or below the OECD average. This is the type of piece I see as a static image that I would want to see made interactively—though I fully understand how difficult and time-consuming that can be—so that I could begin to filter and re-arrange the data. Could discoveries be made by organising countries by geographic regions? Could one just look at the top or bottom deciles?
Today’s piece comes from the National Journal. It is an interactive bubble chart that compares the educated class of cities in 1980 to those in 2010 (educated meaning the share of population with at least a bachelor’s degree).
College graduate cities
Not a whole lot to say about this one, in a good way. A nice summation at the top with clearly presented data below while annotations on the plot call out particular objects in the series worth noting. And then for those who want to find themselves, a drop down filter at the top allows users to select a particular city.
Credit for the piece goes to Brian McGill and Nancy Cook.
The New York Times has recently done good work with interactive infographics that weave a narrative through their chosen form of data visualisation. I covered one such work back in February that looked at girls in science. Today, a similarly structured piece looks at university admissions and graduation rates for ethnic minorities.
Admissions Gap at Universities
Navigation in the top-right guides the user through the story with key schools highlighted. Of course at any time the user can dive into the data and find specific schools that interest them. Overall the piece is less about data exploration, however, and instead merely uses the wealth of data to paint a context for the broader narrative.
This piece from the New York Times is really well done. With simple colours to differentiate three groups, values are charted on a scatter plot to show the distribution of results for an OECD science test in 65 countries. The results clearly show regional differences in the performance of girls in the sciences depending upon the region.
The overall picture
But to make the story clearer for those who may not take the time to really delve into the data, five simple buttons on the upper right take the user through the story by annotating the different highlighted views shown in each step.
Southern and Eastern Europe and the Middle East are Highlighted
Credit for the piece goes to Hannah Fairfield and Alan McLean.
Last week, the New York Times looked at the growing education gap amongst this country’s largest metropolitan areas. The infographic, click the image below to go to the full version, is perhaps a bit more layered, nuanced, and complex than it looks at first. In about forty years, the number of adults with college degrees has doubled, good, but so too has the spread of those numbers across the set of cities, bad. And then to look at any geographic spread, the two datasets are mapped geospatially. By my eye, the Northeast and Pacific Northwest seem to be doing fairly well. Not so much around the rest of the country.
It’s that time of year when young men and women step outside into the big, real world and realise just how much money they owe to various creditors. Yay. The problem, however, has continued to get worse for students. This interactive infographic by the New York Times explains just how so by comparing student debt to costs.
The overall view of indebtedness
While the bubble chart is also available in map form—though I don’t find that particularly useful myself—the more interesting added layer of complexity comes from the data displayed when the user selects a specific university.
Debt at Penn State, which I attended for all of two semesters
Credit for the piece goes to Jeremy White, Andrew Martin, Andrew W. Lehren, and Archie Tse.
This weekend the New York Times looked at segregation in New York City schools by mapping the least (and most) diverse and offering quick comparisons to other large cities. (Is it really a surprise that the country’s largest cities also would need the largest demographic shifts to create diverse education environments?) Probably the best thing, seemingly as always, in the piece is the annotations that provide stories and context and explain the outliers that are all otherwise visualised in the infographic.