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Run Chart Help

A run chart plots the points over time and adds an average or median line to the chart. It is not a control chart as such but you can apply some of the out of control chart tests. An example of how to make a run chart is shown below. The data can be downloaded at this link. This page contains the following:

Data Entry

A lab runs a cholesterol test. To monitor the test, they run a control daily. The control value is 250 mg/dL. They have data for 30 days. The data are entered into a worksheet as shown below. The data can be anywhere on the worksheet and can be in columns (sample identifiers in one column) or in rows (sample identifiers in one row). The data starts in cell A11 in the example workbook.

Creating a New Run Chart

Selecting OK at this point will generate the run chart. No other entries are required.

The options are:

Options for the Run Chart

On the input screen for this chart, there is a button labeled “Show Options”.  If you select that button, the input screen will show the options available for the chart.  It is not required to select any of these options.

Each option is described below.

Out of Control Tests

If you select the Out of Control Tests, the input screen, Tests for Out of Control Points, is displayed below.

Only three tests apply.

Run Chart Options

If you select the Run Chart Options button, the following is displayed.  Note that sigma is estimated from the moving range.

The options include:

Note: the additional lines, check for trends, specifications, and target for average options apply only to the X chart.

Titles and Formats

If you select the “Title and Formats” button, the following screen is displayed:

The options include:

Manual Average

If you select the “Manual Average” button, the following screen is displayed:

The options include:

Chart Location

If you select the “Chart Location” button, the following screen is displayed.

The options are:


Box-Cox Transformation

Selecting the “Box-Cox Transformation” button displays the following screen:

The options are:


Updating the Run Chart with New Data

The run chart can be easily updated with new data after it has been added to the spreadsheet.  Please see Updating Control Charts with New Data to see how the software finds the new data and updates the chart.

Changing the Options for the Run Chart

You can change the current options for an existing run chart (e.g., adding a Box-Cox transformation) by selecting “Options” on the “Updating/Options” panel on the SPC for Excel Ribbon.-

The list of available charts in the workbook will be displayed. Select the chart you want to change options for. The input screen for that chart will be shown and changes can be made. See Changing Chart Options for more information.

In addition, once a control chart is made, there are numerous actions you can take on the chart including splitting control limits, removing points from the calculations, adding comments, selecting the range on which to base control limits, etc. Please see Control Chart Actions for details.

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