Tally chart in Excel

Excel 365
A tally chart is a quick and easy way to record data by filling the chart with vertical bars each time a piece of information is observed. In addition, vertical bars (or tally marks) are immediately divided into groups of five (rarely groups of seven or ten).

Such a chart or diagram is convenient because you don't need to correct the data on counting or tallying ongoing results - it is enough to supplement the data with new information.

In Excel, you can create such a chart to present your data more impressively:

Tally chart in Excel 365

To create a tally chart like the one above, do the following:

   1.   Prepare the data.

  • Add two additional columns with the following formulas:
    • The first additional column (named Largest of 5) should contain the largest multiple of five less or equal to the original number:
      • = ROUNDDOWN (<data cell> / 5, 0) * 5,

        The ROUNDDOWN () function rounds a number down: ROUNDDOWN (number, num_digits), where num_digits is the number of digits to which you want to round the number.

        See more about rounding in Excel.

      • = <data cell> - <mod of 5>

        The <mod of 5> is a value from the second additional column.

    • The second column (named MOD of 5) should contain the remainder of the original number divided by five - the remainder of modulo of five:

      = MOD (<data cell>, 5)

      The MOD () function returns the remainder after the number is divided by divisor: MOD (number, divisor).

      For example, the favorite colors of children in year 5:

    Data for Tally chart in Excel 365
  • Create or download pictures for the one and five pictogram items:
    Item for one unit of Tally chart in Excel 365   and   Item for five units of Tally chart in Excel 365

   2.   Select the data for a new chart.

For this example, cells B3:B8, D3:E8.

   3.   On the Insert tab, in the Charts group, click the Insert Bar or Column Chart button:

Insert Bar or Column Chart in Excel 365

From the Insert Bar or Column Chart dropdown list, select Stacked Bar:

Stacked Bar in Excel 365

See more about chart types for pictograms.

   4.   Customize the chart as you prefer.

E.g., reorganize the vertical labels, remove chart title and legend:

Stacked Bar for tally in Excel 365

   5.   Select the data series, then do one of the following:

  • Right-click on the data series and choose Format Data Series... in the popup menu:
    Format data series in popup menu Excel 365
  • On the Chart Format tab, in the Current Selection group, click the Format Selection icon:
    Format Selection in Excel 365
  • Double-click on the selection.

   6.   On the Format Data Series pane, on the Series Options tab, in the Fill & Line group, in the Fill section:

  • Choose the Picture or texture fill option,
  • Under Picture source, click the Insert... button:
    Fill Data Series by picture in Excel 365

    In the Insert Pictures dialog box, choose the picture location, select the picture file, and then click Open or Insert:

    Insert pictures in Excel 365
  • Select the Stack and Scale with option adjusts the scale of the stacked pictures using the Units/Picture field:
    • Type or select 5 for the first data series,
    • Type or select 1 for the second data series:
    Stack and Scale with option for pictures in Excel 365

Make any other adjustments to get the look you desire:

Simple tally chart in Excel 365

See also how to draw a chart with chalk effect and customize the axis labels.

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