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Exponential advances in technology have provided us with ubiquitous means for creating, recording and mobilising incredible amounts of data. Where once data was scarce, now it is captured in abundance. Our attitudes as consumers have also evolved. We demand transparency and openness and yearn for insight and understanding through compelling visuals.
Whilst we have access to fantastic tools and widespread capabilities for data handling and analysis, the techniques required to most effectively display and communicate data are somewhat neglected. In a cluttered and competitive world, a design approach based on instinct or personal taste is no longer sufficient to cope with, let alone exploit, the fantastic opportunities our data repositories present us with.
This is where data visualisation comes in. Data visualisation is both an art and a science. It is an art concerned with unleashing creativity and innovation, designing communications that appeal on an aesthetic level and survive in the mind on an emotional one. It is a science aimed at understanding and exploiting the way our eyes and brains process information most efficiently, effectively and accurately.
The range of ‘Introduction to Data Visualisation and Infographic Design’ workshop formats share the aim of providing delegates with an accessible and comprehensive introduction to data visualisation and infographic design. There are four over-riding objectives for these workshops, regardless of size and format:
The focus for all workshops is to impart the craft of this discipline, helping delegates to know what to think, when to think about and how to resolve all the analytical and design decisions involved in any data-driven challenge.
The breadth and depth of content will vary depending on the type and format of workshop, as will the range of practical exercises, but the topics that are generally always covered across all event types include:
People attending these workshop sessions come from all backgrounds, organisation types and domain areas.
You might be an analyst, statistician, or researcher looking to enhance your data capabilities. Perhaps you’re a skilled designer or developer looking to take your portfolio of work into a more data-driven direction. Maybe you do not personally get involved in the analysis or visualisation of data but coordinate others who do. You might be a frequent consumer of visualisation and infographic work looking to increase the sophistication of how you read, interpret and evaluate the effectiveness of such designs. These events are intended for all audience types and levels.
The most critical attribute is that you have an inherent curiosity, an instinct for discovering and sharing insights from data, and an interest in approaching your data visualisation and infographic work with a fresh perspective. You should have a willingness to contribute to discussions during exercise activities and do so in a respectful and constructive manner.
These workshops are designed to be technology neutral, they are not focused on or based around any specific tool or programme. However, there will typically be a section providing an overview of some of the most essential and common visualisation tools currently in the market. All materials will be issued digitally on USB memory sticks containing all training content, exercise files and a range of useful references. Attendees are encouraged to bring laptops to use as a workspace for the session. The only software requirements are Excel, a browser and a pdf reader. No other technical prerequisites exist.
All training workshops are delivered by Andy Kirk on behalf of Visualising Data Ltd. You can read more about Andy’s work and background in the 'About' pages.
The key characteristic that shapes the difference in training types is simply the duration and the greater depth of coverage this offers. I do not consider the workshops to be defined by 'level' - basic, intermediate or advanced - it is more about the amount of detail we can cover in the time available.
A seminar-format event providing an outline of the art, science and value of data visualisation design. Recommended class sizes vary, agenda customised to suit each occasion.
An interactive workshop that covers the basics of data visualisation and infographic design. The session is structured around a proven design methodology, providing delegates with a wide variety of ideas, practical resources and inspiration. Recommended max class size of 40. Overview and agenda.
The most popular format. A one-day 'Introduction' event explores the key aspects of data visualisation and infographic design covering the full array of critical thinking involved across design creation process. Recommended max class size of 30. Overview and agenda.
A longer version of the 'Introduction' training workshop, the two-day format provides more time to cover the true breadth and depth of this subject, with a greater number of practical exercises and an opportunity to work on practical challenges in more detail. Recommended max class size of 30. Overview and agenda.
This is the same initial two-day workshop event supplemented by a special third day workshop: 'Building Data Visualisations for the Web' delivered by a guest tutor. This additional day of teaching will introduce delegates to the techniques and programming skills required to take data from a spreadsheet through to generating a custom visualisation for the web. Recommended max class size of 30. Overview and agenda.
There is so much variety and differing degrees of breadth and depth involved in teaching data visualisation and infographic design. This lends it to being potentially sliced and packaged into many different shapes and sizes. If you have a different set of requirements not necessarily covered by the formats presented above, just ask!
Public workshops are entirely influenced by the level of interest that exists anywhere around the world - you can see the variety of locations where events have been held on the 'Previous Events' tab. Check out the 'Future Events' tab to see if a workshop in a location near you has been planned. If not, and you are interested in attending a public training workshop in a city near you, please complete the form on the 'Request an Event' tab and your preferred location will be noted and added to the wishlist. Once sufficient levels of interest are expressed for a given place every effort will be made to schedule an event in that location. Class sizes are generally kept to maximum of about 25 and minimum around 6 to help balance a supportive learning environment with opportunities for one-to-one instruction and group discussion between all participants.
Alongside the schedule of public events, private, on-site training events can be scheduled for organisations to hold for their staff. These workshops offer the value of a full, focused training session with the potential for activities to be designed to suit the client’s specific requirements. Maybe you have a specific workplace visualisation challenge that you would like to work on within the structure of a training session? Or perhaps you want to explore visualisation possibilities of various key datasets in teams and see what each team comes up with? Whatever your organisation’s visualisation needs are, an on-site training event can be designed and delivered to maximise your learning and development. Clients will be responsible for arranging the venue for the training and the costs of any refreshments desired. If your company/organisation is interested in hosting a private, on-site training event, please complete the form on the 'Request an Event' tab or send an enquiry email to Andy Kirk to discuss your requirements.
These are special workshops where an organisation may host a training event but open up attendance to certain delegates, for example, if attached to a conference event.
Here are a selection of testimonials from workshop participants with their comments and feedback about both public and training events.
The schedule of training events is entirely based around where demand exists: opportunities are always being sought to offer training in new places around the world. If you are interested in attending a training workshop in a city near you please complete the form below and your preferred location will be noted and added to the wishlist. Once sufficient levels of interest are expressed for a given place every effort will be made to schedule an event in that location and you will be notified of the plans. If your company/organisation is interested in hosting a private, on-site training event, please either fill in the form below or send an enquiry email to Andy Kirk to discuss your requirements.