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Types of Tables 

Types of Tables

Visual Presentation of Data

Stacy Christiansen

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Types of Tables


A table displays information arranged in columns and rows (Example T1 and 4.1.3, Table Components) and is used most commonly to present numerical data. Each table should have a title, be numbered consecutively as referred to in the text, and be positioned as close as possible to its first mention in the text. Formal tables usually are set off from the text by horizontal rules, boxes, or white space.


A tabulation is a brief, in-text table that may be used to set material off from text. Tabulations require the text to explain their meaning. They are placed directly in the text, unlike a table, which cannot always be placed next to its text citation.

Tabulations usually consist of 1 or 2 columns of data; they generally should not exceed half a column in length. A tabulation is set off from text by the use of space above and below and has boldface column headings. Titles, numbering, and rules are unnecessary. The tabulation should be centered within a single typeset column and may be set in reduced type (Example T2).

younger. A history of smoking was noted in 35 patients (39%), and previous radiation exposure for a condition unrelated to MEC was reported for 10 patients (11%). Presenting symptoms are listed in the following tabulation:


No. (%) of Patients

Mass in parotid region

87 (98)

Pain or tenderness

13 (15)

Facial nerve weakness

6 (7)

Skin ulceration

3 (3)

Facial twitching

1 (1)

Cervical mass separate from tumor

1 (1)


5 (6)

Some patients presented with more than 1 symptom.

Example T2 In-text tabulation.


A matrix is a tabular structure that uses numbers, short words (eg, no, yes), or symbols (eg, bullets, check marks) to depict relationships among items in columns and rows and allow comparisons among entries (Example T3).

Boxes, Sidebars, and Other Nontabular Material.

Information that is complementary to the text (eg, lists) can be set off in a box or sidebar within the article (see 4.3, Nontabular Material).

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