What is a scatterplot?

A scatterplot is a graph that you can use to explore the potential relationship between a pair of continuous variables. Minitab plots symbols at the data values of the variables at their (x, y) coordinates. When you create a scatterplot, you usually display the response variable on the y-axis and the predictor variable on the x-axis for each observation. For example, you could examine the relationship between the fuel efficiency of a vehicle and its horsepower, or plant growth and soil pH. Patterns may reveal an association between variables and help you determine the next step of your data analyses.

This scatterplot shows that as highway miles per gallon for a car increases (x), so does its city miles per gallon (y).


Use scatterplots instead of time series plots when your time-dependent data are not chronologically ordered, or if the data collection intervals are irregular.

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