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Graphing Variables

When you are graphing data, you are always going to plot the graph the same way.

  1. The independent variable goes on the X (horizontal) axis
  2. The dependent variable goes on the Y (vertical) axis


This is a graph demonstrating Temperatures in New York City over a period of 6 days.

Independent Variable: Day

Dependent Variable: Degrees in Fahrenheit

The later days have a higher temperature.

This is a graph demonstrating what happens to the value of Sarah's time over the years.

Independent variable (cause):

  • Years

Dependent variable (effect):

  • Value of the car in money

The older the car is, the less the value of the car is.

This is a graph demonstrating the time the helicopter traveled a certain distance

Independent variable (CAUSE):

  • Time in seconds

Dependent variable (EFFECT):

  • Distance in meters

Because of the time, the helicopter traveled a specific distance.

This is a graph showing the number of people in a store over the time of day.

Independent Variable (cause):

  • Time

Dependent Variable (effect)

  • Number of people in the store

The middle of the day seems to have the most people visiting the store.

This is a graph demonstrating the number of teens in a small town who have cell phones.

Independent variable:

  • Age in years

Dependent variable:

  • Number of teens with phones

As the age of the students increases, the number of teens with phones increased.