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Great Graphs

Data visualization best practices, practical how-tos, tutorials in multiple software platforms, and guest experts. Designed with busy number-crunchers in mind.

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Is your data sitting around in spreadsheets, dusty, unused, and forgotten about? Your data deserves to be out in the world: utilized, actionable, talked about. Visualizing data through charts, tables, and diagrams helps you deliver bite-sized information that viewers can understand at a glance and retain for the long run.

During this course, we’ll walk through a step-by-step design process that you can apply to your own projects. You’ll learn how to customize your visualization for your audience; choose the right chart for your message; declutter your visuals so that viewers’ attention is focused on the data; reinforce your branding with custom color palettes and typography; and increase accessibility by ensuring that your visuals are legible for people with color vision deficiencies. Finally, you’ll learn to tell a story through dark colors (saturation), explicit titles, and call-out boxes (annotations).

The vast majority of lessons are software-agnostic. In other words, these universal best practices can be applied to any software program. I've also included a few software how-to tutorials, like how to find your custom color codes with an eyedropper or how to decipher your fonts with a free website.

Bonus! You'll hear from me AND guest experts. The guest experts work in a variety of different industries and they specialize in a variety of different software programs.


Your Instructor


Ann K. Emery
Ann K. Emery

Your data deserves to be out in the world--actionable, talked about, used--not gathering dust in spreadsheets. Let me transform your technical information for non-technical audiences. I've consulted to clients like the United Nations, State Department, and Centers for Disease Control, plus dozens more foundations, nonprofits, film companies, banks, hospitals, and universities worldwide. Each year, I lead dozens of in-person workshops for thousands of people. My online courses bring those skills to you, too.


Class Curriculum


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Frequently Asked Questions


When does the course start and finish?
This year-long course begins on October 1, 2018 and continues until October 2019.. I'll email you (nearly) every week and let you know that a new batch of lessons is available.
How did you choose which skills to include?
I teach skills in a very intentional sequence: from analyzing your audience, to choosing the right chart, to selecting a software program, to editing your graph. In other courses I've taken, the instructors have focused on "what NOT to do." I've left those classes feeling afraid to try anything new. This course focuses on "what TO do" first, second, and third in an easy-to-replicate order.
How do I know if your teaching style is right for me?
Enroll in my free course called Beyond the Dusty Shelf Report. You'll see examples of before/after makeovers from real reports, dashboards, and slideshows. That course is the appetizer. This course is the main dish (with lots of yummy desserts, too). I don't read from scripts. I sound like a human. If you want a dry, robotic teacher reading from a script, then this course isn't for you.
What if I have questions about my individual project?
Enroll in the Silver Tier and you'll get access to monthly office hours sessions where you can submit your drafts and get feedback from me and from your fellow students. Enroll in the Gold Tier and you'll get an hour of one-on-one consulting time with me. We'll share screens and work through your individual questions together. Together, we can tackle what it would take you all day to fiddle with on your own.
Can't I just find this information on the internet or in books?!
Yes. If you've got the time to read books, subscribe to blogs, listen to podcasts, and take classes on your own, then go for it. This course is a shortcut. In 12 months, I'll teach you what it took me a decade to learn on my own.
Can I get the same information from your blog?
Yes and no. I freshly-recorded 100+ lessons just for this course. I used to post tutorials on YouTube, but that was back in 2012, and I posted the videos as the mood struck me, not in a logical, cohesive course. My blog posts don't follow a cohesive order, either.
Which software program are we using?
This isn't a software how-to course. It's a software-agnostic best practices course. The vast majority of lessons focus on principles that can (and should) be applied to any software program. That being said, you'll need to use some type of software program, so there are bonus lessons on using Excel AND Tableau AND R.
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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