In Tableau, we can create a variety of visualizations using different combinations of dimensions and measures. Let’s see what that means for analyzing our Rotten Tomatoes data.

When we double click on the Rotten Tomatoes % followed by Genre fields, Tableau automatically creates a barchart:

Automatic Sum Bar Chart

As always, we should be ready to make adjustments to Tableau’s auto-generated graphs. Tableau automatically converts Rotten Tomatoes % into a sum and splits it across Genre. What we’re seeing in this bar chart is the sum of the percentages in each genre category, which means…honestly not much! What would make more sense to a viewer are the average Tomatometer percentages in each Genre. Let’s aggregate by Average this time, which will instead display the average Rotten Tomatoes % across Genre.

Reorient Barchart

We can reorient this barchart by switching the column and row fields.

Genre Avg Barchart

We can also pull up the Show Me menu and click on some of the suggestions - treemap, circle pack diagram, and table. These and other combinations of dimensions and measures are shown in the GIF to the right.

The same data is being used, but it can be represented in different ways. Notice how the data fields become configured differently in the shelves for each chart, particularly in the Marks Card. We’ll learn more about this in the Aesthetic Properties lesson.


  1. Using your paper sketch for the movie profitability dataset as a reference, try to recreate your visualization. Note: It doesn’t need to look exactly the same, and you might even change it up a bit after seeing what options you have in Tableau!
  2. Compare your visualization to this one we’ve created here. Feel free to download the Workbook and see how they were created. Next up, we’ll learn how to customize our charts with color, shape, or size.

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