While a KDE plot can tell us about the shape of the data, it’s cumbersome to compare multiple KDE plots at once. They also can’t tell us other statistical information, like the values of outliers.

The box plot (also known as a box-and-whisker plot) can’t tell us about how our dataset is distributed, like a KDE plot. But it shows us the range of our dataset, gives us an idea about where a significant portion of our data lies, and whether or not any outliers are present.

Let’s examine how we interpret a box plot:

  • The box represents the interquartile range
  • The line in the middle of the box is the median
  • The end lines are the first and third quartiles
  • The diamonds show outliers


Examine the box plot to the right. Notice how it also is able to show distributions, along with information about outliers.

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