#B2VB Challenge: HBCU College Finder Text Table

As a mom of two high schoolers, B2VB’s week 3 college-related data set caught my eye. With a plethora of higher-education choices available, wouldn’t it be great if we could generate a list of colleges based on a specific set of criteria? With this idea in mind, I decided to build a text table that could be modified based on the input provided and give the end-user the ability to sort the list based on their priorities.

With a little “data discovery”, I found fields in the data set for In-State Tuition and Out-of-State Tuition. Bingo! Just the perfect data to put my idea into action. Afterall, isn’t Cost one of the first things families consider when making a short list of colleges?  To make the dashboard user-friendly, I decided to call this out as the first step – selecting the State you live in – using a bold font with an arrow (created in Figma). This bit of information provides the input to display either In-State or Out-of-State $$. To accomplish this, I needed to modify the data source, build a parameter, and write a calculation. 

The Data Source

The data set provided had the list of colleges, but no States. With a little bit of effort (thanks, Google!) I was able to add a column to indicate the State for each College. To answer the question regarding tuition (In-State vs Out-of-State), I also needed a way to provide the dashboard user with an input for the State they reside. This required adding another table to the data model – a full list of States. This was accomplished using a right join in the Data Source tab.  

The Parameter

Next, I created a string parameter called “Where Do You Live?” and populated it with the values from the full list of States.  

The Calculation

Next, I created a calculated field that uses the parameter to tell Tableau if it should pull the value for the In-State or Out-of-State tuition.  This calculated field was brought into the view as one of the measures in the text table.

I followed similar steps for the Undergrad/Grad selector, using a parameter and calculated field to display the student population based on the dashboard user’s selection.

Here’s a link to the final result on my Tableau Public Profile – take it for a test drive and let me know what you think! The dashboard incorporates a few other techniques as well – stay tuned for a follow up blog post with more details.

Thank you to #Back2VizBasics and the #Datafam for these community challenges that help us stay current with our Tableau skills.

Happy Vizzing! 

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