Data Literacy


Data literacy is the ability to understand data and data practices sufficiently to meaningfully interpret data and effectively communicate that meaning. As such, it involves understanding where data came from, how to draw meaning or conclusions from it, how to read charts appropriately and make inferences from visualizations, and how to recognize when data are being used to mislead. Data literacy is inclusive of a broad range of data skills including data management, cleaning, analysis, and visualization. Most importantly it requires understanding the meaning of data, how it fits into a broader context, and what conclusions can and can’t be derived from that data.

The Carpentries is a set of workshops that were developed to build data literacy.

Similar Terms

Data information literacy

Relevant Literature

Martin ER. What is Data Literacy?. Journal of eScience Librarianship 2014;3(1): e1069.

Frank, M., Walker, J., Attard, J., Tygel, A. (2016). Data Literacy: what is it and how can we make it happen? Editorial. The Journal of Community Informatics, 12(3), 4-8.

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