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How to Visualize Likert Scale Data in Tableau

Updated: Sep 4, 2020

Tableau Likert scale

If you are familiar with research field, then you should know what Likert scale is. Likert scale is a type of rating scale used to measure attitudes or opinions in research. With this scale, respondents are asked to rate items on a level of agreement.

An example of a five level Likert scale;

Indicate how you agree with the following statement

An example of a five level Likert scale

An example of a four level Likert scale;

Indicate how satisfied are you with the following?

An example of a four level Likert scale

So, how can you visualize Likert scale data in Tableau?

There are two ways to visualize Likert scale data in Tableau; (i) Using a divergent stacked bar. (ii) Using a 100% stacked bar.

In this short article, we’ll explore how to visualize Likert scale data in Tableau using 100% stacked bar chart.

The problem - Data set

Consider the following dummy data on rating of a training by the participants. The questionnaire in this case focuses on eight major areas with a five level Likert scale (Unsatisfactory(1),Satisfactory(2), Good(3), Very good(4), Excellent(5))

The actual data resembles the snapshot below;’

Sample data set

Where, the columns head contain the questions which respondents rated, and the columns contents – contains the actual ratings, the column ‘Id’ indicates each unique respondent. You can create a similar data set or download this sample data set here to follow along.

Step by step guide on how to visualize Likert scale data in Tableau

The first step to do after connecting this data, is pivoting the data. By doing so, we’ll bundle all questions in one column ‘Questions’ and all responses in another column ‘Ratings’- hence simplifying our data for analysis.

To do so, highlight all the columns you need to pivot (for this case, all questions rated) and choose ‘Pivot’ under the drop down menu.

Pivoting data in Tableau

Rename the ‘Pivot Field Names’ and ‘Pivot Field Values’ as ‘Questions’ and ‘Ratings’ respectively.

Renaming field names in Tableau
  • Drag dimension field ‘Questions’ to the rows shelf

  • Drag dimension field ‘Id’ to the columns shelf – change aggregation to CNTD(Id)

  • Add a table calculation ‘Percent of Total’. (Note, the table calculation is computed across the table).

Simple 100% bar chart in Tableau

Drag measure field ‘Ratings’ to the dimension area.

Since the ‘Ratings’ are values – we can assign them an alias name that corresponds the item on the Likert scale by Right clicking on Ratings’>>Aliases… >>add the appropriate alias name.

Adding alias names in tableau
  • Drag now dimension field ‘Ratings’ to the color shelf.

  • Choose the appropriate colors.

  • Sort legend (manual drag and drop) – have higher ratings on the top way down.

  • Add labels.

100% stacked bar chart in Tableau

Sort the Questions in descending order by AVG(Ratings)

Sorting (data) view in Tableau

Let’s show the average rating for every question.

Drag AVG(Ratings) to the column shelf

While on the second view – AVG(Ratings)

  • Choose Circle under marks card.

  • Remove Ratings from color shelf.

  • Add labels and align them to middle center.

  • Adjust the size of the circle so label can fit.

Tableau dual charts
  • Make the charts dual.

  • Hide the axes.

  • Chose the appropriate color for the circles.

100% stacked bar chart in tableau final

With this view, users can easily tell the questions rated higher (Using AVG(Ratings)). While at the same time interpret the proportion of respondents that rated a particular item on the Likert scale.

I hope this article was helpful to you.

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