A comprehensive guide to Line Graphs!

In today’s world, where people are more aware and observant, they rely on specific information before taking any concrete decisions. This change in perspective has enhanced the need for a piece of streamlined and organized information that is accurate. Moreover, when we represent a dataset in the form of a bar graph or a line graph, it becomes easier to understand and catches the eye instantly. Research shows that data represented in the form of a graph is retained for a longer time and thus proves to be more effective in the long run.

Quantitative data related to a specific subject within a fixed period can be represented by using a line chart or line graph as it is commonly called. It is called so because all the points are connected with a line. Like any other graph, it has a y and an x-axis.

What is a Line graph?

Any change occurring over a specific period can be graphically represented in the form of a line graph. It has two axes, the x-axis which is the horizontal axis, and the y-axis which is the vertical axis of the graph. The period is generally represented on the horizontal x-axis and the change in the other quantity is represented on the vertical y-axis. The increase or decrease in the quantity over a particular period can be easily seen on a line graph. Line graphs are generally used to show trends in various surveys and research.

What are the various parts of a line graph?

A-Line graph typically comprises of the following parts:

  1. Title – Title tells us about the data being represented on that particular line graph.
  2. X-axis – the period over which the change is being measured is represented on the x-axis.
  3. Y-axis – It represents the quantity that is changing with time.
  4. Trend – The points on the graph are then joined with a line. The point of intersection of the label gives us the trend.

How is a Line Graph plotted?

It is very simple to plot a line graph. Just follow these simple steps:

  • Write the Title of the line graph on the top first, so that the purpose of plotting the graph is clear.
  • Take a graph paper and plot a vertical and horizontal axis.
  • Label both the axis as x and y-axis. The time will be shown on the x-axis and the other factor on the y-axis.
  • Plot the points on the graph as per the given values or data set.
  • Once all the points are plotted on the graph, join them with a line.
  • The line will show you the clear trend.

How can you read a Line graph?

  • Follow the ups and downs on the graph to read it. Look at the two axes and try to observe the changes.
  • Observe the values of the points on the graph.
  • Follow the line on the graph to see whether it depicts a rise or a fall.
  • By carefully observing the emerging patterns, you will be able to gauge the trend.

Besides Line graphs, scatter plot are also used to map quantitative data. Let us understand the difference between the two.

What is a Scatter Plot?

A Scatter plot uses dots instead of lines to represent the given values. The value of an individual data point is represented by a single dot. Scatter plots have data points that can be divided into groups based on the proximity of the dots. They can also show unexpected gaps in the data.


Both lines graphs and scatter plots are useful in representing data. However, scatter plots are preferred when the data from both variables is continuous. Refer to online portals such as Cuemath for in-depth information about the concept.

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