# How to plot the relationship of two Likert scale variables?

I have two variables which are measured on a Likert scale. I ran the Spearman correlation test to test the relationship between them and they have a negative correlation coefficient (-0.729 with a p-value < 1.2e-12). I am pretty new to plotting with R and my question is, is there any way I can plot the relationship between the two variables? I am having difficulties with what kind of plot can depict the relationship since they are discrete.

One idea is to do a jittered scatterplot.

I simulated 100 Likert scores x from 1 to 7, and roughly positively associated Likert scores y. They are summarized and tabulated below.

summary(x)
Min. 1st Qu.  Median    Mean 3rd Qu.    Max.
1.00    3.00    5.00    4.48    6.00    7.00
table(x)
x
1  2  3  4  5  6  7
5  8 13 22 24 16 12

summary(y)
Min. 1st Qu.  Median    Mean 3rd Qu.    Max.
1.00    3.00    4.00    3.94    5.00    7.00
table(y)
y
1  2  3  4  5  6  7
9 11 19 23 19 14  5

cor(x, y, meth="s")
 0.9044931


A standard scatterplot shows locations of the 100 $$(x,y)$$ pairs, but there is a lot of over-plotting and we can't get an idea how many individuals are represented by each point.

plot(x, y) By jittering (adding a small amount of random noise to) each score, I can see how many individuals correspond to each location.

xj = x + runif(100, -.2,.2)
yj = y + runif(100, -.2,.2)
plot(xj, yj, pch=20)
abline(v=1:7, col="green2")
abline(h=1:7, col="green2") Here I have jittered by $$\pm 0.2$$ or less. One can choose the amount of jittering---depending on the sample size and the strength of the association---to seek the best graphical effect. If you have a very large sample size, then you may want to use small dots for individual subjects, by using parameter pch-"." in plot,