Tally Marks

Tally marks are an exciting and easy topic of statistics. Generally, tally marks and graphs are used to keep and count the score. The symbol ‘|’ is used to denote the value one. In earlier days, before the discovery of the numbers, it was tough to keep track of the individual belongings of people, e.g., humans used to have domestic animals such as goats and cows and keeping track of their count was very hard if the number was huge. At that time, tally marks were beneficial.

Tally Marks Definition

Tally marks are defined in the unary numeral system. It is a form of numeral used for counting. The general way of writing tally marks is as a group or set of five lines. The first four lines are drawn vertically and each of the fifth line runs diagonally over the previous four vertical lines, i.e., from the top of the first line to the bottom of the fourth line. Tally mark is the fastest way of keeping track of a group of five.

Counting Tally Marks

Tally marks are the fastest way of keeping track of numbers in groups of five. See the figure below to understand the logic.

Counting Tally Marks

We can see here;

  • One is expressed by ‘|’ tally marks.
  • Two one is represented by ‘| |’ tally marks.
  • Three is represented by ‘| | |’ tally marks.
  • Four is denoted by ‘||||’ tally marks.
  • Five is not denoted by ‘| | | | |’ tally marks in the graphs. For the number 5, draw four vertical lines (||||) with a diagonal (\) line through it.

Tally Mark Chart

Tally mark chart or graph is a graphical representation of the data in statistics. It is beneficial in scanning the data. Tally marks on graphs are a quick way of keeping track of numbers in groups of five. Graph table has one vertical line which is made for each of the first four numbers and the fifth number is represented by a diagonal line across the previous four.

Tally Marks Questions

Q 1: Let’s consider the marks of 25 students in standard IX in a particular school. The scores are as follows:

41, 53, 64, 31, 53, 33, 70, 61, 74, 32, 53, 56, 56, 64, 56, 88, 28, 70, 56, 64, 74, 53, 53, 61, 31.

The maximum mark allotted to the paper is 100. Draw a tally chart for the above data.

Solution: Rearranged data in ascending order:

Tally Marks Example

Using the tally mark table, different data can be obtained without actually going through the observations.

Q.2: Consider a garden with lots of flowers. Mary has different types of flower pots which are given in the table below:

Tally Marks Question 2

Using this table, it’s very easy to get different information, without actually going through the observations.

1. How many Daisy flower pots are there?

2. Which two flowers have the same number of pots?

3. Which flower has the maximum number of pots?

Solution:

1. It can be seen that there are two tally marks in front of the Daisy row. So the number of Daisy flower pots is 2.

2. It can be seen that in front of Lily and Jasmine, the number of tally marks are 4. So both Lily and Jasmine have the same number of pots.

3. In the table, the maximum number of tally marks 10, can be seen only in the Tulip row. So, the Tulip has the maximum number of pots.