In this task students use statistical techniques to evaluate a number of Public Health initiatives, using the notion of a ‘microlife’ – a measure of the impact on an individual’s expected lifespan of various lifestyle choices.

Overview of task

In this task students use statistical techniques to evaluate a number of Public Health initiatives, using the notion of a ‘microlife’ – a measure of the impact on an individual’s expected lifespan of various lifestyle choices.

Strand

Statistics

Prior knowledge

Students will need a secure understanding of the statistical techniques from GCSE mathematics, and a good grasp of the data-handling cycle.

Relevance to Core Maths qualifications

•AQA

•C&G

•Eduqas

•Pearson / Edexcel

•OCR

Suggested approaches

After the initial teacher introduction, this task would be suitable for pairs or small groups of pupils working independently. Work through the first section of the resource, which explains what a ‘microlife’ is and how it can be used as a statistical measure in Public Health research. Then introduce the task, explaining that the health authorities in our fictional town have the option to choose one of a range of eight possible public health initiatives. Students who are familiar and confident with the data-handling cycle could then start the task straightaway; for others, support with planning the task might be appropriate.

Resources/documentation

The resources for the activity are included in a single document, ‘Microlives’. That document provides all the information required to run the activity.

Relevant digital technologies

Depending how far students are expected to develop the project, and how they are required to present their findings, they may find it helpful to use presentation software, in addition to a spreadsheet or other data-handling package to investigate the effects of different options.

Possible extensions

Students could extend this activity by investigating any one of a wide range of public health issues.

Acknowledgement

Developed by Will Ball, of Heathfield Community College, East Sussex.