The unit entitled ‘Smoking and Health’ examines some of the major diseases common among people who smoke. A scatter graph of smoking and birth weight is examined, and students are asked to look at other evidence and consider whether smoking is harmful. Critical appraisal is invited of some conclusions of the Royal College of Physicians report Smoking OR Health (1977). On completing this unit students will have practised reading tables, plotting graphs, drawing and considering inferences, interpreting tables and data, comparing two or more sets of data, describing and assessing trends, plotting and reading bar charts, using and interpreting death rates, reading time series, calculating percentage changes and using them for comparison, interpreting statements using the word ‘average’ and making a critical assessment of other comments based on data. They will be more aware of data sources, the problems of data comparison, the distinction between correlation and causality, the data connecting smoking with various aspects of health and the distinction between conclusions shown from cross-sectional and longitudinal studies.
The unit: ‘Equal Pay’ requires students to investigate whether the Equal Pay Act is working, by applying statistical techniques, and considers some of the inherent problems in making comparisons. The median, cumulative percentages and the interquartile range are covered.
For each unit there are comprehensive teacher's notes giving an overview of the unit, the aims and objectives for that unit, and prior learning or prerequisites and the equipment required.