Use this activity to boost students’ data handling skills

An image showing numbers on a calculator

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Boost students’ confidence with handling calculations involving decimals and significant figures

Knowledge of mathematical concepts such as rounding numbers and handling decimals and significant figures is important for students studying chemistry. All measurements have uncertainty that comes from the limitations of measuring equipment and/or the variation in a sample, and the way we express the result of a measurement or calculation conveys important information about our estimation of its accuracy.

Use this activity to provide extra support for students when working with data and allow them to practise handling significant figures, decimal places and uncertainty in measurements. Starting with number lines, it moves on to choosing between options and filling in blanks to increase the level of demand (inspired by the blog of Don Steward and Jo Morgan’s resource).

Use this activity alongside the Education in Chemistry article Improve students’ data handling.