AmCharts has updated its library to version 5. AmCharts5 includes updates to their Venn diagram library. Since I love Venn diagrams I spent the morning figuring it out. I created the Venn diagram below to show HS completers. It took me a while to figure out the syntax. Overall I think I was mostly able to make it do what I wanted to do. However, I since haven’t figured out how to put a category entirely in another category. For example, I would like a big circle with all HS completers that includes HS graduates and HS certificate students.
The Venn diagram below is of Maryland public school students that completed high school. It shows the overlap of how the students that: (1) earned a completion certificate (for completing a special education program); (2) met the University System of Maryland (USM) requirements); (3) met the Career and Technical Education (CTE) requirements; and/or (4) met the regular diploma requirements. “Normal diploma” is just to indicate students that did not earn either a USM or CTE credentials in addition to their high school diploma. This is primarily for my own understanding of the data and to learn web-based data visualization techniques.
Now that I have made this visualization I am not sure if using a Venn diagram is better than a Sankey diagram for this data. I would also like to add additional information to the chart such as a title and to have the actual numbers displayed on the chart. As far as the data goes, I wish that I had information about the post-high school behavior of these different groups of students. According to this data, about 60.5% of high school completers met the USM requirements.
The colors used below are not intended to mean anything beyond looking nice. It took me a while to figure out the colors. Once I figured it out I just used a rainbow with my only intention to combine blue and yellow to make green.
StateWide High School CompLetion Venn Diagram
Source: Maryland State Department of Education, 2019 High School Completion
Earlier I wrote about trying to make a Venn diagram to show that high school graduates that meet University System of Maryland (USM) requirements and Career Technology Education (CTE) requirements were a subset of all high school graduates. I could not get the Venn diagram to render correctly. Today I figured out the correct syntax. I had to define areas in the Venn diagram that I did not actually want to show. That is, I had to define “USM HS Grads” and “CTE HS Grads” and “Both Requirements Grads” even though I do not want them to render separately in the chart. I know that is not the best explanation, but I want to just quickly make this diagram live to see if how it works on a live webpage. I will revisit this Venn diagram again soon with further refinements.
I spent yesterday trying to figure out how to create a divergent stacked bar chart in amcharts that would display properly on my website, which is based in WordPress. I was unsuccessful. I will need to continue reading through the documentation which is written for people who actually know how to code. Since I got frustrated with my original project, I decided to return to the immediate college enrollees pipeline again to refine it as I learn more about how amcharts operate.
This version of the Sankey diagram is a bit more readable. I was able to wrap the label text and add more space on the right-hand side. I also added code that will allow the data or the image to be downloaded, which I think is a cool feature. I am still having a bit of an issue getting the amcharts diagrams to display as part of the blog, but they work when looking at an individual post. I also added int the percentage numbers, each of which had to be separately added. I have read in the documentation that it is possible to load data into an amcharts from an external source, such as a spreadsheet, but I have not yet figured it out.
As with other versions of this diagram, the biggest weakness is that it does not capture transfer students.
Immediate College Enrollees Pipeline
Overall 65% of students that enrolled in college directly after high school graduation graduated college, from the same sector, by age 25. An additional 3% of students were still enrolled in college (in the same sector). Looked at another way only 31% of high school graduates graduated from college from the same sector that they enrolled in.
These notes are adapted from the notes provided by the Maryland Longitudinal Data System. Any errors are my own.
To be counted as a community college graduate, the student must have enrolled in any community college and graduated from any community college. Students who start at a community college but graduate from a college in another sector are not counted as graduates. Students who start in another sector but graduate from a community college are also excluded. To be counted as persisting (still in college), the student must have NOT graduated from any community college and be enrolled in any community college in Fall 2019. Some students who enrolled in community college transferred from the college and are enrolled in another four-year public, state-aided independent, or out-of-state institutions. Those students are not reported here.
To be counted as a public-four year college graduate, the student must have enrolled in any four-year public and graduated from any four-year public. Students who start at a four-year public but graduate from a college in another sector are not counted as graduates. Students who start in another sector but graduate from a four-year public are also excluded. To be counted as persisting (still in college), the student must have NOT graduated from any four-year public and be enrolled in any four-year public in Fall 2019. Some students who enrolled in a four-year public transferred from the college and are enrolled in another community college, state-aided independent institutions, or out-of-state institutions. Those students are not reported here.
To be counted as a State-aided indepented college graduate, the student must have enrolled in any state-aided independent institutions and graduated from any state-aided independent institution. Students who start at a state-aided institution but graduate from a college in another sector are not counted as graduates. Students who start in another sector but graduate from a state-aided independent institution are also excluded. To be counted as persisting (still in college), the student must have NOT graduated from any state-aided independent institutions and be enrolled in any state-aided independent institutions in Fall 2019. Some students when enrolled in a state-aided independent institutions transferred from the college and are enrolled in another community college, public, or out-of-state institutions. Those students are not reported here.
The out-of-state table above evaluates within sector college graduation independent of college of enrollment. To be counted as a college graduate, the student must have enrolled in out-of-state institutions of any type and graduated from an out-of-state institution of any type. Students who start at an out-of-state institution but graduate from a college in Maryland are not counted as graduates. Students who start at a college in Maryland but graduate from an out-of-state institution are also excluded. Out-of-state institutions may be community colleges, public four-year, or other types of private institutions.
This post is mainly to show that I learned how to code a Venn diagram in Amcharts. However, I still have a ton to learn about how to code the data and what the data means. The Venn diagram is not one of the preset charts available in the Amcharts WordPress plugin. That said, with a little trial and error I was able to copy one of their examples and make it work. The main challenge was figuring out the correct resources to load.
I got data from the Maryland State Department of Education about high school completion for the class of 2019. It shows the number and percentage of students that left high school with a variety of qualifications. Three of the categories are University System of Maryland (USM) requirements, career technology education (CTE) requirements, and the requirements for both. Generally, the USM requirements are completing the credits required for admittance to a USM institution.
To be a CTE completer, a student must complete an approved CTE course of study. CTE programs are typically about 4 credits.
Since MSDE publishes the number of students in the State that complete both the USM and CTE requirements I can build a Venn diagram. The data below is for the entire State of Maryland. It is the first Venn diagram I have built using Amcharts. I need to explore more of the options. However, since it is easy for me to break the functionality of the charts using Amcharts, I will explore the functionality slowly and iteratively.
Blog | Caroline Boice
As I figure out the program you need to click on the actual post or this link to see the chart. I am working on this issue.
Future Venn Diagrams
It is sad that I probably will not be able to create a completely accurate Venn diagram for all of the high school completer options because I do not know how the categories overlap, but I will probably play with trying to set up a "representation" with a bunch of stated assumptions.
Update: Technical Issues
As I learn about these computer programs I am bound to run into technical issues because I am coming at this data from a public policy and scientific background. My last formal coding training was in 1992 or so when I was in middle school. As I was making these charts I ran into the (documented) issue of needing to use a specified placeholder value for the charts so that they show up properly. I failed to do that for a few charts because I was copying pieces of code from other places. I think I figured out that issue after a bit of trial and error. Now I've run into the problem of a few of the Amcharts not properly rendering when as part of the blog stream, but will render as part of an individual post. I have made a workaround of explaining the issue and posting a link to the post, but I am going to continue to explore a more elegant solution. The issue is probably I am missing a piece of code.