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Exploring Dataviz in SPSS

You can improve the look of the standard SPSS histogram with just a little elbow grease.

First, double click on the histogram in the Output window to open the Chart Editor. While in the editor, do the following steps:

  1. Change your graph colors

  2. Double click on the graph background and change the graph fill color from gray to white

  3. Double click on the histogram bars to change the bar color from the standard brownish beige to a meaningful color (i.e., one that represents your company or organization). By clicking on the “Edit” button you can create specific colors using RGB or HSB color codes.

  1. Jazz up your x-axis

  2. Double click on the x-axis label to change it from an SPSS variable label to a label in plain English. (Use the same process for changing the title of the graph)

  3. To change the number of decimal places displayed on the horizontal axis, double click on the x-axis and hit the arrow on the top right corner of the Properties window until “Number Format” appears. Modify the decimal places as needed.

  1. Add a reference line to the x-axis. Your reference line can be the mean, median, or like in the example, a specific threshold.

  1. Final Steps

  2. Hide the legend by right-clicking in the chart editor and selecting “Hide Legend” from the menu of options. (You can also add a text box or annotation with this menu if you’d like.)

  3. Change the font from the standard “SansSerif” to your font of choice by single clicking on each element and using the drop down font menu in the right hand corner of the Chart Editor.

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