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Learn data visualization with online courses and programs

Data analytics can provide transformative information to organizations. But translating data into meaningful insights requires the technical knowledge of data visualization experts. Explore online courses that can help you build data visualization skills.

What is data visualization?

Data visualization refers to the graphical presentation of information or data. Experts use data visualization tools to translate complex analysis into a format that others can easily interpret and understand.

Data is first collected and organized before it is run through various analytical tools and processes to uncover significant trends or anomalies. Rather than simply presenting numbers and values, professionals can use data visualization to transform their findings into a digestible, easily understood format. 

Data visualizations can be used to explain a wide array of complex issues, ranging from pay disparities among genders to shifting demographics in particular locations to changes in climate over hundreds of years.¹ And there are many different types of data visualization formats, with varying levels of complexity. A simple line graph or bar chart may be the right choice for an audience who wants to understand topline findings about year-over-year revenue growth for a company. But for somebody interested in displaying how a company’s customer base has shifted over time based on location, they may find 3D modeling to be a more effective tool. 

Data can be shaped in a variety of ways. Understanding how to use data visualization tools can be the key to successfully reaching your intended audience.

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Browse online Data Visualization courses

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Data visualization course curriculum

Individuals who want to take data visualization classes can explore tutorials that range from the fundamentals of data visualization for beginners to more specialized topics such as coding.

Foundational data visualization courses can introduce learners to data visualization principles, explain how to communicate data-driven findings, and show how to recognize data errors. Curriculum can include how to retrieve data sets while examining how mistakes, biases, and other problems affect data. To gain a deeper understanding of data visualizing and its scope, learners can take low-cost or free courses in Python or other programming languages used to analyze data, as well as software applications which can create maps, word clouds, pie charts, and other graphics from data sets.

Explore data visualization jobs

The ability to make sense of data is valuable in many industries and sectors. Depending on the company’s size, data experts may work across departments or specialize in a particular area.

Jobs where you may utilize your data visualization training include: 

  • Business intelligence analysts: Create financial and market intelligence by identifying and showing patterns and trends in available data, and producing periodic reports.² 

  • Operations research analysts: Use mathematics and logic to help organizations make informed decisions and solve problems.³

  • Data visualization specialists: Support senior data analysts by transforming data sets and analysis into visual content including maps, charts, and graphs.⁴

  • Marketing specialists/researchers: Research conditions in local, regional, national, or online markets to determine potential sales of products or services and develop recommendations.⁵

  • Community service managers: Analyze data to identify community needs, assess the effectiveness of programs, and present results to supporters.⁶

Regardless of the position, these types of careers often require critical thinking, problem-solving, strong communication, research skills, and the ability to conduct analysis.⁷ Strong analytical skills and the ability to effectively communicate findings can enable data visualization experts to pursue management positions.

How to become a data visualization specialist

For learners who want to help organizations achieve meaningful results, data visualization can be a promising career option. Individuals interested in learning data visualization will find that the paths can vary. 

Whether you are a new employee or are seeking expertise in a specific area, you can develop skills by completing data science and data visualization courses, which are available online. Boot camps, including coding boot camps, are a pathway to gaining intensive, hands-on experience in a short timeframe. Programs leading to certificates do not necessarily require bachelor’s or master’s degrees and may be attractive to learners with a variety of professional backgrounds.

While every organization is different, employees seeking promotions can benefit from earning degrees if their employer requires candidates to have a bachelor’s degree for management positions.⁸

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