A histogram can be used in numerous places and situations in real life. Some of the commonly used fields are as follows:

**What are the common misuses of histograms? **

**Measured variable is not continuous numeric**

As noted in the opening sections, a histogram is meant to depict the frequency distribution of a continuous numeric variable.

When our variable of interest does not fit this property, we need to use a different chart type instead: a bar chart. However, there are certain variable types that can be trickier to classify: those that take on discrete numeric values and those that take on time-based values.

Variables that take discrete numeric values (e.g. integers 1, 2, 3, etc.) can be plotted with either a bar chart or histogram, depending on the context.

Using a histogram will be more likely when there are a lot of different values to plot. When the range of numeric values is large, the fact that values are discrete tends to not be important and continuous grouping will be a good idea.

A trickier case is when the variable is a time-based feature. When values correspond to relative periods of time (e.g. 30 seconds, 20 minutes), then binning by time periods for a histogram makes sense.

However, when values correspond to absolute times (e.g. January 10, 12:15) the distinction becomes blurry. When new data points are recorded, values will usually go into newly-created bins, rather than within an existing range of bins.

In addition, certain natural grouping choices, like by month or quarter, introduce slightly unequal bin sizes. For these reasons, it is better to use a different chart type like a bar chart or line chart.

**Using unequal bin sizes**

Creating a histogram with bins of unequal size is not strictly a mistake, but one has to be careful in how the histogram is created as it can cause a lot of difficulties in interpretation.

When bin sizes are consistent, this makes measuring bar area and height equivalent. In a histogram with variable bin sizes, however, the height can no longer correspond with the total frequency of occurrences. Doing so would distort the perception of how many points are in each bin since increasing a bin’s size will only make it look bigger.

**Summary**

A histogram tool is a standard tool for understanding data and the characteristics of data.

Knowing how to correctly read a histogram graph can greatly assist in process improvement efforts.

A histogram is a representation of data that buckets a range of outcomes into columns along the x-axis. The y-axis represents the number count or percentage of occurrences in the data for each column and can be used to visualize data distributions.

A histogram is the most commonly used graph to show frequency distributions. A frequency distribution shows how often each different value in a set of data occurs.

This helpful data collection and analysis tool is considered one of the seven basic quality tools.

A histogram's common use also makes an excellent graphic for representing data during presentations.

Why don't you try developing a histogram yourself?

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**Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)**

**What is data?**

Data is a collection of facts, such as numbers, words, measurements, observations, or just descriptions of things.

**How do you differentiate between data and information?**

Data is unorganized, while information is structured or organized. Data is a collection of facts. Information is how you understand those facts in context.

**What are the ways to represent data?**

Tables, charts, and graphs are all ways of representing data, and they can be used for two general purposes. The first is to support the collection, organization, and analysis of data as part of a scientific study. The second is to help present the conclusions of a survey to a broader audience.

**What are the different types of graphs?**

The four most common are line graphs, bar graphs and histograms, pie charts, and Cartesian graphs.

**What is the difference between histogram and bar graph?**

With bar charts, each column represents a group defined by a categorical variable; and with histograms, each column represents a group defined by a continuous, quantitative variable.

It is very similar to a bar graph, but a histogram groups numbers into ranges or bins.

Also, a histogram, unlike a vertical bar graph, shows no gaps between the bars. The height of each bar shows how many fall into each range.