Title

The effects of celeration lines on visual data analysis

Document Type

Article

Publication Title

Behavior Modification

Department

Psychology

ISSN

0145-4455

Volume

30

Issue

3

DOI

10.1177/0145445503262406

First Page

295

Last Page

314

Publication Date

May 2006

Abstract

Previous visual analysis research reported that the overall agreement between visual analysis and statistical analysis was poor. In response, some researchers suggested the use of celeration lines to improve the accuracy and reliability of visual analysis. However, subsequent research reported little or no improvement in accuracy with such lines. The present study presented 5 board-certified behavior analysts with a series of behavioral graphs. The participants were asked to answer questions similar to those posed in previous studies but were also asked to talk aloud as they viewed each graph. Results indicate that the participants made accurate decisions for only 72% of the graphs and that celeration lines did not improve overall accuracy. The verbal protocol analysis suggests that participants were as likely to attend to trend when celeration lines were absent as they were when they were present, with the most differences attributable to varying participant competencies and not graph (i.e., celeration line) characteristics.