Histogram of Coastal Waters

In this activity, you will be generating a histogram of the coastal water temperatures of Myrtle Beach, SC, and Key West, FL. You will also be determining the mean temperature of each beach during the year.  The data set includes the monthly water temperature in degrees Fahrenheit during the year 1999. The monthly water temperatures are climatological averages based on observations from NOAA/National Ocean Service (NOS) tide stations and NOAA/National Data Buoy Center (NDBC) buoys. Although ocean conditions vary from year to year, water temperatures vary less drastically than air temperatures do.  These temperature averages provide useful information for planning a vacation or beach activities. Using either Excel or the TI-83, generate histograms of the data for each beach. Also using Excel or the TI-83, find the mean annual temperature for each beach .

This data exists in three files; one is in Excel Data format, one is in Text format, and one is in TI-83 Group format. If you want to generate a histogram using the  TI-83, you will have to import the text data into the calculator from the computer after you have downloaded the file.

For each beach, which category or bin has the highest frequency of readings? What is the range of temperatures for the "more" category (bin) at Myrtle Beach? at Key West? If you like warmer water temperatures all year, which beach would you prefer to go to?  Which beach has a higher mean temperature for the year? 


Original work on this document was done by Central Virginia Governor's School students Amy Sliva (Class of '01), Erin Hildreth, Megan O'Callaghan, and Annie Yu (Class of 2002).

Copyright © 2001 Central Virginia Governor's School for Science and Technology Lynchburg, VA