Learn step by step how to navigate and understand your Community Needs Assessment. This tutorial will focus on report features available to all SparkMap Subscribers. If you want to explore features available to Premium Subscribers, check out our tutorial How to Explore Your Premium Community Needs Assessment.
Navigating Your Report
Introductions & Data Tables
Data Visualizations & Benchmarks
Navigate between indicators in your report using the round menu button at the bottom right corner of the page (Figure 1).
Click the button to open the indicator menu. Then, to close the indicator menu, click the round button with the “x” icon (Figure 2).
When the indicator menu is open, a clickable list of indicators will appear. Click the name of an indicator to jump to its section on your report.
Note: Clicking the “Back” button on your browser will exit the completed assessment and send you back to the previous step.
Step 2 – Introductions and Data Tables
Each indicator section begins with a dynamic introduction paragraph. These introductory texts provide concise summaries of the indicator as it relates to your selected location (Figure 3).
Data provided in the introductory sentences are also displayed in the subsequent tables, maps, and charts.
Data tables display information for your selected location (first row) and also include rows for state and national benchmarks (Figure 4).
Note: Data source, release date, and geography information are available below each data table.
Step 3 – Data Visualizations and Benchmarks
There are several types of visualizations in your completed report. First, inset maps are available for most indicators. Inset maps provide a quick geographic view of the data and will display your selected location. Click the “View larger map” link to view and interact with the data in the Map Room (Figure 5).
Note: Maps display data at the smallest geography available (e.g. – census tract, school district, or point level) while data tables display data at the county level.
Next, many indicators also include data dials. Dials are a quick way to visualize how your selected location compares to state and national averages, or benchmarks.
The dial appears red if your selected location is performing worse than state and/or national averages. The dial will show green if your selected location is performing the same or better than state and/or national averages (Figure 6).
Charts and graphs are also commonly included. Hover over the charts and graphs to display associated data values (Figure 7).
Bar charts include state and national averages for easy comparison. State and/or national averages can be toggled on and off by clicking the geography name (e.g. Alabama and United States) at the bottom of the chart (Figure 8).
Line graphs show trends over time, where available. Hover over the line graph to display associated data values. Click the geography names to toggle state and national averages on and off.
Finally, pie and donut charts display indicator data and breakout information. Click a portion of a pie or donut chart to highlight the section (Figure 9).
Step 4 – Report Options
Customize your report using the “Report Options” button (Figure 10).
Add or remove state averages/benchmarks by clicking the checkbox next to “Show state data.”
Add or remove breakout data by clicking the checkbox next to “Show supplemental data.”
Add or remove inset maps by clicking the checkbox next to “Show maps.”
Get a “Quick Facts” report but clicking the radio button next to “Quick facts” (Figure 11).
Generate a source and methodology appendix by clicking the radio button next to “Source & methodology.”