General Graphing Rules:

On paper:

  1. Use a ruler for each Axis
  2. Title must be appropriate and show a relationship between variables. (Example: The Effect of (Independent Variable) on (Dependent Variable)... The Effect of Sunlight on Freckles...
  3. Both X and Y axis must be labeled with the unit of measurement and the actual units. (X axis reflects the independent variable and the Y axis shows what changes have occurred during the experiments... the dependent variable) > Examples: Height (cm), Time (sec).
  4. Graph should be as large as possible for accuracy.
  5. Use a Point of origin that  makes sense. You do not always start a (0,0).
  6. Units are represented in even increments per axis. Example  if you are observing days for a short period of time on the X axis use increments of one, or fives or tens etc... increments generally do not change on the axes.
  7. Do not connect the points on a line graph, unless specifically directed to do so. Line up your ruler so that half of the points are on either side of the ruler to make a best fit or trend line.
  8. If needed use a color code or key and label for multiple lines.

On MS Excel: go to this link for help http://www.srvhs.org/staff/teachers/rgroch/bio/bio_home_page/excelgraphing.htm