Four letter words are tough to escape on a college campus. Whether it’s in the gym, the cafeteria, or just walking to class a @$%*, *&!?, or #!@$ is inescapable, at least for long periods of time. Although the hierarchy of expletives is far from ironed out, one quad-lettered thorn causes more pain than most – data.

Just uttering those two syllables sends shudders down the backs’ of students across departments. Many students—the ones who spent college avoiding math and science—are prone to horrific flashbacks triggered by the word. One minute they are in the union eating with friends or reading the newspaper and the next they’re under the bright lights and cold professor’s stare from whatever general studies statistics course they were lucky enough to survive.

But data don’t have to be scary. Despite all the numeric baggage graduates carry with them, data can still be clear and dare I say it, fun. That may mean stepping over the piles of statistics and excel documents.

Infographics have been mending the ties between people and data for years. Thanks to them long lists of data, like American’s perceptions of European countries, can be converted into easy to digest graphics (like the one pictured above).

Understanding topics as diverse as torture can be made painless by an infographic, like the one on the left. Below are links to a number of infographics that tackle a variety of issues.

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