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Achievement objective S8-1

In a range of meaningful contexts, students will be engaged in thinking mathematically and statistically. They will solve problems and model situations that require them to:

  • Carry out investigations of phenomena, using the statistical enquiry cycle:
    • A. conducting experiments using experimental design principles, conducting surveys, and using existing data sets
    • B. finding, using, and assessing appropriate models (including linear regression for bivariate data and additive models for time-series data), seeking explanations and making predictions
    • C. using informed contextual knowledge, exploratory data analysis, and statistical inference
    • D. communicating findings and evaluating all stages of the cycle.


  • Uses the statistical enquiry cycle.
  • Conducts experiments using experimental design principles to find solutions to problems:
    • Poses investigative questions using the statistical enquiry cycle.
    • Defines and identifies variables that need to be accounted for in the experiment.
    • Designs experiments, taking variability into account.
    • Conducts experiments to generate data.
  • Conducts surveys to find solutions to problems:
    • Poses investigative questions to explore using the statistical enquiry cycle.
    • Collects own survey data using a questionnaire.
    • Uses an appropriate sampling method.
  • Uses existing data sets to find solutions to problems:
    • Poses investigative questions to explore using the statistical enquiry cycle.
    • Locates own data and background contextual information from the Internet and other sources.
  • Selects and uses appropriate statistical models to explain relationships and make predictions and forecasts:
  • Uses exploratory data analysis to unlock the stories in the data:
    • Uses appropriate statistical graphs and tables to explore the data and communicates relevant detail and overall distributions.
    • Explores other variables or groupings to look for patterns and relationships.
    • Uses appropriate measures to communicate features of the data.
    • Uses informed contextual knowledge to support explanations and to communicate findings.
  • Makes statistical inferences.
  • Communicates findings:
    • Support (or otherwise) for original hypothesis or conjecture.
    • Appropriate graphs that relate to findings discussed in conclusion.
    • Quantifies summary statistics to support (or otherwise) the conjecture.
    • Population to which the findings can be generalised.
    • Constraints of the experiment or survey within which the findings are valid.
    • Alternative explanations.
  • Evaluates all stages of the cycle:
    • Specifies, justifies, and relates improvements (contextual or statistical) to the problem.
  • See key mathematical ideas on NZmaths.


S8-1 links from S7-1.

What is new/changed?

  • Experimental design
  • Using informed contextual knowledge (seek themselves).
  • Use of exploratory data analysis.
  • Communicating findings and evaluating all stages of the cycle.

Possible context elaborations

  • CensusAtSchool is a valuable website for classroom activities and information for teachers on all things statistics.
  • Water taste test – this activity provides an introduction to experimental design through the students undertaking a poorly designed experiment.
  • Memory test – this activity looks at the two different types of experimental design, two independent groups and paired comparisons.

Assessment for qualifications

NCEA achievement standards at levels 1, 2 and 3 have been aligned to the New Zealand Curriculum. Please ensure that you are using the correct version of the standards by going to the NZQA website.

The NZQA subject-specific resources pages are very helpful. From there, you can find all the achievement standards and links to assessment resources, both internal and external.

Learn more:

The following achievement standard(s) could assess learning outcomes from this AO:

  • AS91580 Mathematics and statistics 3.8 Investigate times series data; Internal, 4 credits.
  • AS91581 Mathematics and statistics 3.9 Investigate bivariate measurement data; Internal, 4 credits.
  • AS91582 Mathematics and statistics 3.10 Use statistical methods to make a formal inference; Internal, 4 credits.
  • AS91583 Mathematics and statistics 3.11 Conduct an experiment to investigate a situation using experimental design principles; Internal, 4 credits.

Refer to the mathematics and statistics matrix.

Last updated August 10, 2015