A decent rule of thumb is to use a table or figure if you can't describe the facts or conclusions in two lines or less. However, be certain that the tables and figures you offer are not just duplicates of the written description you also produced. Tables and figures can add interest and depth to your paper, helping it stand out from the rest.
Use these guidelines to help you decide what type of element to include in your essay:
If the information will help readers understand the topic better: include a table or diagram. For example, if you were writing about how children learn languages, a chart showing the various factors involved would be useful.
If the information will help readers identify connections between concepts: include a network diagram or map. For example, if you were writing about different types of analysis methods for data, including cluster analysis and factor analysis, a map showing the relationships between cities might help readers understand the concept more deeply.
If the information will help readers predict what will happen in the future based on present circumstances: include a graph or chart. For example, if you were writing about economic trends, a chart showing past performance patterns would help readers understand how to approach forecasting tasks.
It's okay to include multiple elements in one essay.
Figures are visuals that have been drawn or photographed, whereas tables are collections of numbers and text. If you use many visuals in your essay, number them sequentially both inside the appropriate paragraph of text and within the caption. Be sure to include a title for each figure.
Figure essays are often about comparison and contrast. You can compare and contrast two figures (e.g., one from history and one from current events) or more rarely three or four. Use language that explains why they are similar or different (or explain why you think they are). You may want to use color coding to make this process easier.
Figure essays are usually between 400 and 800 words long. However, because there is no limit on word count for essays, you can write much longer ones if you wish. It's recommended that you keep sentences short and simple rather than writing a lot of words per sentence.
Figure captions should always appear before the figure itself. However, this is not required by most journals. As long as you do not place it after the paragraph it belongs to, readers will not be affected by its appearance in any way.
Figure drawings should be black and white unless otherwise stated. Color photographs should be included as a visual element in the essay and not used solely for decoration.
There are two methods to organize your images: include them in your text next to the paragraph where you describe them (Figure 1), or include them altogether towards the conclusion of the essay (Figure 2). Captions are always required for images. Captions should accomplish two things: name the image and inform us where we can find it. Include a brief description of the picture with the caption.
Figures are very useful tools for getting your point across in an essay because they help to clarify details and ideas. They can also add interest to your writing by showing different perspectives of one subject. Using appropriate figures is therefore important for making your argument clear and concise as well as interesting to read.
As mentioned earlier, there are two ways to use figures in your essay: standalone (in other words, not part of any list) or as appendices. Let's take a look at each method.
With these figures, you are simply using pictures to make your point without linking them to any other elements in the essay. The advantage of using standalone figures is that you can insert them anywhere in your paper while still keeping your narrative flow. This is particularly useful if you want to include a lot of images without disrupting the rhythm of your essay.
Disadvantages of using standalone figures include the fact that they cannot be numbered or cited.
To create a table of contents, begin by writing the title or chapter titles of your research paper in chronological order. Second, if your paper has subheadings or subtitles, you write them. The page numbers for the respective headings and subheadings are then written. Finally, include any other sections of the essay that need to be referenced, such as sources or notes.
As with any academic work, the process of creating a table of contents begins with an abstract. An abstract is a brief summary of the entire paper or section thereof. It should not exceed 250 words. An abstract does not necessarily describe the whole paper; rather, it provides the reader with a general idea of its content. An abstract can be written separately from the rest of the paper or included within it. For more information on how to write an abstract, see our abstract writing guide.
Tables are used to organize and display large amounts of information quickly and easily. A table of contents is a list of all topics covered in a book or article with their corresponding pages. This can be useful when reading because it makes it easier to find specific topics within the text.
Table of contentses are also available for journals, magazines, and other publications that do not have chapters.