Skip directly to searchSkip directly to the site navigationSkip directly to the page's main content

How to Read a Hawaii-IBIS Indicator Graph

When you run a query in Hawaii-IBIS, you will see a graph. Below is a typical graph from an actual Hawaii-IBIS indicator query. There are different kinds of graphs, such as pie graphs, line graphs, and bar graphs, which you can select on the query page. The graph displayed here is a line graph.

Parts of a Graph

  • The Title. The first thing you want to look at is the title. A good title will tell you what the graph is about, as well as the population measured. The graph below is about adults who are overweight or obese by gender in Hawaii measured from 2011 through 2013.

  •  graph image
  • The Y-Axis. Next, look at the vertical or Y-axis. Graphs are displayed in 2 dimensions (height and width). These are also called, "axes," with a vertical, up and down, or "Y" axis and a horizontal, left-to-right, or "X" axis. The Y-axis tells the reader about the data in the graph. Our graph is showing the percent of adults who are overweight or obese.

    Looking closer at the Y-axis, you will see numbers (0, 20, 40, 60, etc.) going up the side. These numbers tell the reader about the data values. For instance, the left-most dot on the top (blue) line has been plotted between 60% and 70%. If you mouse over the data point, the exact value will be shown. In this case, 64.1% of adult males in Hawaii in 2011 were overweight or obese.

  • The X-Axis. The X-axis is the horizontal axis. The numbers along the X-axis on our graph are years, 2011-2013. So this graph shows the trend for overweight or obesity rates for the time period from 2011 to 2013.

    It is also important to note that the X-axis intercepts (crosses) the Y-axis at the value "0." This is not the case with all graphs, but it is will be true for all Hawaii-IBIS graphs.

  • The Legend. There are two lines on the graph. The legend tells us that the blue line represents adult males while the yellow line represents adult females. So right away, we can see that adult males in Hawaii are more likely to be overweight or obese.

  • Confidence Intervals. The confidence intervals are represented on the graph by the small vertical lines that run through each data point. The confidence interval may be thought of as the range of probable true values for a statistic. In this case, the confidence intervals for males and females do not overlap. This means men in Hawaii are statistically significantly more likely to be overweight or obese than women in Hawaii.

  • Data Notes. You will also want to read the graph footnotes before you make a final interpretation of the data. The Data Note under our Teen Birth Rate graph indicates that the rate includes only live births, and does not include all pregnancies. Often, we refer to "teen pregnancies." But we typically have data for only teen births.

Putting it All Together

In summary, adult males in Hawaii are more likely to be overweight or obese than adult females. The rate of overweight or obesity changed little from 2011 to 2013.

Please feel free to contact us if you have suggestions for additions or improvements to this website.

The information provided above is from the Hawaii Health Data Warehouse and the Hawaii State Department of Health's Hawaii-IBIS web site ( The information published on this website may be reproduced without permission. Please use the following citation: " Retrieved Fri, 22 October 2021 16:44:18 from Hawaii State Department of Health, Hawaii Health Data Warehouse, Indicator-Based Information System for Public Health Web site: ".

Content updated: Tue, 6 Oct 2015 08:59:44 HST