1.7 Every picture tells a story: summing up
In summary, this section has looked at time-series graphs, conversion graphs and mathematical graphs. Like all representations, graphs draw from a range of common conventions and styles to convey meaning. From a mathematical point of view, graphs give a visual impression of the relationship between two (or sometimes more) variables; but bear in mind that this impression is largely under the control of whoever draws the graph. When you are drawing graphs for yourself or others, you need to choose and indicate axis labels and scales with care. When you are reading and interpreting a graph, you need to be clear about the context in which the graph exists, and to think about what decisions have led to the graph looking the way it does.
Activity 14: Summarising graphs
Graphs are a very important tool in mathematics, and one which you will meet many times in the course, so make some notes about graphs and the different uses you have come across.
Go back through Sections 1-6 and make some notes about the different uses for graphs. You might want to include the main characteristics of each graph, and perhaps give an example. Continue making notes as you work through the rest of this course.
You have seen that there are conventions for drawing graphs, such as scaling and labelling axes, including information about units where appropriate, giving a title, and so on. Make a list of graph-drawing conventions, and add to this list as you come across others. Make sure that any new terms introduced in the course are included in your notes.