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Research Guides

Popular Visualization Tools


Tableau Website

Tableau is a data visualization/business intelligence (BI) software that allows you to drag and drop fields in your data to build interactive visualizations and dashboards.

  • What you'll need:
    • Installation of Tableau Public or licensed version of Tableau Desktop
    • Data that you want to visualize in a spreadsheet, SQL database, or web API
  • Examples/gallery:
  • License: 
    • Tableau Public is free for anyone; visualizations can only be saved by publishing on the Tableau Public Server, which is open to anyone
    • Tableau Desktop is free for students. Visualizations can be saved to a computer hard drive or published online for sharing.
  • Help:

Voyant Word Cloud

Voyant website

Voyant is an online text analysis program that gathers together many discrete text analysis functions into one program. It can generate a quantitative summary of a document or a collection of documents, including word count, vocabulary density, and most frequently used words. It can also generate interactive visualizations, such as word clouds, trendlines, and node and link graphs.


RAW website

RAW is an online visualization tool that allows you to choose from pre-selected visualizations and map aspects of your data to the view. The program focuses on chart types that are more difficult to create with other tools, so line graphs, bar charts, etc. are not available. Limited customization is available with color, size, and sorting, and you can download or embed the vector image you create.


  • What you'll need:
    • Spreadsheet data that you copy/paste into an editor
  • Examples/gallery:
  • License: Free, open source
  • Help:


Processing website

Processing is an open source sketchbook and programming language for coding in a visual arts context. Both are programming languages that require coding.

D3: Data Driven Documents

D3 website

D3 is an open source library of prebuilt visualizations you can apply to your data to create interactive data visualizations on the web. Customizing the view requires familiarity with javascript programming language and CSS for styling.

Other Tools

Microsoft Power BI: A BI program for data visualization and reporting A web platform that produces D3 diagrams without programming A suite of free, online data analysis and visualization tools, including WTFcsv, Word Counter, SameDiff, and Connect the Dots