Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects

Difference Between Table and Chart

Table vs Chart

A table is a means of displaying data or information in rows and columns. Rows are also called a record or vector, columns are also known as parameters, fields, or attributes. The point of intersection between a column and a row is called a cell.

A table is used in research, data analysis, and communication, and it can be seen in various media from signs to notes in print and in computer software and several other locations. It is used to keep track of information in terms of quantities and numbers as well as names and addresses and other details.

Tables can be simple, consisting only of a few columns and rows, or they can be multi-dimensional consisting of ordered hierarchies. An example of a multi-dimensional table is the multiplication table. Tables are used in:

Publishing – example is the Table of Contents
Mathematics – example is the Multiplication Table
Natural Sciences – example is the Periodic Table
Information Technology – example is one that is supported by software applications such as word processing and presentation software.

A chart, on the other hand, is a graphical display of information wherein the information is illustrated in symbols such as bars, lines, or slices. It is used to define the relationship between a large quantity of data and its parts and makes it easier to read and understand.

Texts are seldom used in a chart; they are mostly used in titles which appear above the chart describing data that is being referred to in the chart. Data are displayed in a horizontal (x) axis or a vertical (y) axis each consisting of a scale. A chart also consists of either a major or a minor grid of lines. With data that have multiple variables, the chart must have a legend which lists the variables in the chart for easy identification.

Charts have several types:

Common charts: histogram, bar chart, pie chart, line chart, timeline chart, organizational chart, tree chart, flow chart, area chart, cartogram, and pedigree chart.
Less common charts: bubble chart, polar area diagram, radar chart, waterfall chart, and tree map.
Field specific charts: open-high-low-close chart, candlestick chart, Kagi chart, and sparkline.
Well known charts: Nolan chart, Gantt chart, PERT chart, and Smith chart.
Other charts: control chart, natal chart, nomogram, run chart, structure chart, and strip chart.


1.A table is the representation of data or information in rows and columns while a chart is the graphical representation of data in symbols like bars, lines, and slices.
2.A table can be simple or multi-dimensional. While there are several types of charts, the most common are pie charts bar charts, and line charts.
3.Texts are seldom used in charts while they are often used in tables.
4.A chart is used to help understand a large amount of data and its components while a table is used to keep track of information such as quantities, numbers, names, addresses, and other details.

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1 Comment

  1. Table and chart are often used interchangeably in English. Consider “Chart of Accounts,” which is a table or list of accounts. “Graph” always implies a graphic like a bar chart (bar graph). “Table” always means information (usually text) organized into rows and columns. “Chart” usually only means a graphical representation of data when preceded by an adjective like “bar chart,” “Gantt chart,” etc. When “Chart” is used on its own, it is usually synonymous with “Table.”

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