Saturday, 10 December 2016

The difference between NUMBERS and RATES

Was talking to No3 Son recently about a piece of science homework in which he had to chart and comment on 2012-2014 cancer statistics. The data was a great example of how the NUMBER of cases can give a very different picture to the RATE of cases. Looking at the NUMBERS chart (red) one might think that 70-79 is where the biggest danger lies. This may be misleading as the graph shows the number of cases not the rate (e.g. per 100,000 people).

Using 2011 census data from Wikipedia, one can work out the number of cases per 100,000 people (blue chart). It is clearly different and now you can see that the older you are the more chance you have of getting cancer.

2012-2014 Cancer Data

Cancer NUMBERS

Cancer RATES

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