By Ashley Weinard, NCMA Educator and Project Director, The Big Picture
Looking for a real-world example of how visual literacy can change the world? Look no further than Edward Tufte, artist, statistician, and pioneer in the field of data visualization. Tufte presents some great arguments for why visual information matters and how the ability to read it is essential to all disciplines. From a lecture he gave in 2010:
“Evidence is evidence whether words, numbers, images, diagrams, still or moving. The information doesn’t care what it is. The content doesn’t care what it is. It is all information … For readers and viewers, it is the intellectual tasks that remain constant regardless of the particular mode of evidence … to understand and to reason about the materials at hand and to appraise their quality, relevance, and integrity.”
For more on Tufte and the impact of visual information, listen to his views about how better visual information and literacy could have changed the outcome of the Challenger and Columbia space shuttle disasters!