Åk 6–9

4.8 Box and Whiskers Diagram
A box and whiskers diagram or boxplot as it is also called, is a dispersion measurement and is especially useful when comparing values from several groups or from several points in time.  It shows the larges and smallest values, the middle value – median, and the quartiles which make up the ends of the “box” which contain 50 % of the data.

We will look at an example:

A group of people have the following ages, written in order.

Lower Quartile: the limit for the first 25 % of the values = 17
Upper Quartile: the limit for the first 75 % of the values = 25
Interquartile Range: The upper quartile minus the lower quartile =
25 – 17 = 8

The boxplot looks like this when we draw it on the number line:

We summarise:

  • Least and greatest value
  • The median, the middle value
  • Lower Quartile (25th percentile)
  • Upper Quartile (75th percentile)