National Numeracy Week 2018
Posted on 29 January 2018

This week is National Numeracy Week, an annual event at the College which celebrates everyday numeracy skills and promotes the importance of numeracy proficiency at college, work and at home.

A common misconception about numeracy is that it is ‘easy maths’, however, the National Numeracy Charity defines being numerate as: “Being confident and competent to use numbers and data to make good decisions in daily life.”  Some numeracy can be very difficult and incredibly daunting, even for the most able mathematician.

We are surrounded by statistics intended to shape and mislead our point of view, special offers that are not so special and seemingly simple calculations with high stakes consequences. Being able to see through the statistics and have the confidence to accurately deal with calculation (even if you need a calculator) will make you more employable as well as able to manage your day to day life.

Could you answer the following questions? And how do they make you feel?

  1. You are paid £9/hour and receive a 5% pay rise. What is your new rate of pay?
  2. In a closing down sale a shop has an additional 25% off on items already reduced by 30%. What discount do you actually get?
  3. A TV has been reduced by 20% and now costs £280. What was the original price?

Would you bother working these questions out or would you just accept them? What if your boss wanted you to work them out?

Less than a ¼ of 16-24 year olds with a grade C or above at GCSE maths have an equivalent level of numeracy - suggesting that GCSE maths is no guarantee of good numeracy skills. In a recent YouGov survey (June 2017) 23% of adults answered incorrectly or ‘don’t know’ to question 1 above.

What can you do to show your future employer that you are numerate?

All first year students are required to take the National Numeracy online check-up by visiting with the aim of obtaining the Essentials of Numeracy certificate. This can then be added to their Kloodle profile.

Second year students should already have their Gold certificate from 2017, but if not, they can retake the challenge to get their Essentials of Numeracy certificate.

Staff and parents are also encouraged to check their current numeracy levels too!

Sign-up instructions for students can be found here.

National Numeracy have also released a free App - Star Dash Studios which provides a fun and engaging way to practice increasingly complex numeracy in context. So follow the links and improve your numeracy skills and therefore your employability now! 







Answers to questions: 1. £9.45/hour  2. 47.5% off   3. £350