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Great Graphs: Excel How-To's (Mini Course)

Hands-On Techniques to Make Better Data Visualizations with Software You Already Have

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Are your takeaway findings getting lost?

Bad graphs can slow down the viewer's comprehension... increase cognitive load... and fail to inform decision-making processes.


Dusty Shelf Reports aren't inevitable.

With intentional editing, you can design visualizations that inform and inspire--right inside of Excel, PowerPoint, and Word.

All you need is Excel, PowerPoint, and Word

You don't have to be a computer programmer or a graphic designer to be a great communicator.

What's included in this Mini Course?

This is our data visualization how-to course. Here’s everything that's included:

  • Video lessons that you can watch anytime (the equivalent of my half-day Great Graphs: Excel How To's workshop)
  • Templates & how-to instructions to download and follow along
  • Discussion boards to ask questions and post your own work
  • Weekly emails to cheer you on
  • Lifetime access so you don't feel rushed
  • Examples from a variety of industries (public health, youth development, education, juvenile justice, museums, and more)

Who This Training is For

This training IS for those of us who make graphs ourselves. This course is NOT for supervisors who delegate all their graph production to someone else. (Supervisors, enroll your staff. Ask me about group rates.)

This training IS for people using everyday software like Excel, Word, and PowerPoint. This course is NOT for graphic designers who exclusively use Adobe Illustrator or Acrobat.

This training IS for people who love learning Excel magic tricks. This training is NOT for computer programmers who exclusively write code in programs like R or Python.

This training IS for people who are ready to dive deeper. This training is NOT for people just hearing about data visualization for the first time. (Not sure why a 3D pie chart with 50 slices is impossible to read? Let me train you on best practices first; then, come back and enroll in this course next year.)

This training IS for people whose time is precious. I've got two kids and I run a business. I'm well past the phase in life where I can afford to learn the long, hard way. I'm constantly hunting for solutions to give me my time back.

Discussion Boards to Ask Questions

Every module includes discussion boards where you can ask questions, comment on the lessons, and share your own tips with the community.

Weekly Emails to Cheer You On

I know you’re going to skip straight to the juicy dataviz magic tricks, but I’m going to email you on Mondays around 11 am EST and pretend like we’re working through the course one module at a time.

3,907+ participants from around the globe

have already taken the leap into better reports, slideshows, dashboards, and infographics through our online courses.

Your Instructor


Ann K. Emery
Ann K. Emery

Each year, I lead dozens of in-person workshops for thousands of people. My online courses bring those skills to you, too.

Depict Data Studio also consults to the United Nations, State Department, and Centers for Disease Control, plus dozens more foundations, nonprofits, film companies, banks, hospitals, and universities worldwide.

Your data deserves to be out in the world--actionable, talked about, used--not gathering dust in spreadsheets.


"Having attended Ann’s keynote address at the 2017 Southeastern Library Assessment conference, I learned a few quick tricks to transform a stock Excel graph to something better.

Once I moved into an assessment role full-time, I knew I would be writing more reports and wanted to up my game with Excel graphs and charts so I knew just where to go for help. Ann’s course in Great Graphs offered that and so much more.

When I had to write a summary of a laptop loan program survey, I transformed the plain, ordinary graphs to uncluttered, with clearly understandable graphs of the survey results.

Ann takes you beyond the basic Excel charts and graphs to learn how to make super cool waffle charts and icon arrays and adding spark lines and bars to a spreadsheet for quick visual analysis.

Two of my favorite tips were learning how to create new theme colors to input the color brand from my organization and using bold colors to highlight your point with the remaining graph in gray or lighter tones. I found this course to be very practical with beneficial tips to use immediately in my work and would recommend it to anyone desiring to up their game with charts and graphs for data visualization."

- Lee Ann Lannom, Assessment Librarian, Jean & Alexander Heard Libraries, Vanderbilt University

"The Great Graphs tutorials are exactly what I was looking for in learning data design techniques in Excel, especially using examples that makes sense in a nonprofit and philanthropic setting.

I like the short snippet format where I can quickly learn about a technique and then instantly apply it.

For instance, I was working on multiple data tables showing the number of services delivered and number of clients accessing housing services by quarter across multiple homeless services programs. Program leadership wanted a quick scan of the numbers by quarter for the entire fiscal year. They were used to looking at numbers this way.

I decided to add sparklines to the data tables so that program leadership can also quickly visualize the trend over time. I quickly reviewed the Great Graphs tutorial on sparklines and added trends to the data tables. I also learned other tips to create sparklines quicker and add other visual features such as high and low points in the data.

A data analyst I was working with on this project was amazed that this could be done in Excel. He was used to doing all his analysis in python or R, and wasn't too familiar with data design techniques in Excel.

Thank you, Ann, for creating these quick tutorials that anyone can follow, especially those in the nonprofit sector."

- Rocele Estanislao, Assessment & Evaluation Analyst, Kaiser Permanenete Bernard J. Tyson School of Medicine


Frequently Asked Questions


How long do I have access to the course?
Indefinitely.
I know you're a perfectionist and always update your courses.
Yes, and you'll receive all future updates to this course.
What if I am unhappy with the course?
We would never want you to be unhappy! If you are unsatisfied with your purchase, contact us in the first 30 days and we will give you a full refund.

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