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Watch the video below, where Prof David Spiegelhalter discusses a newspaper headline about eating bacon sandwiches.
If you cannot view the video, click below to see some alternative text.
Should this news be worrying you?
What other information might you want to know to decide how worried you should be?
How does this piece of information affect your view of the risk involved in eating a daily bacon sandwich?
Does this help you assess the increased risk that comes from eating a bacon sandwich every day?
The papers announced that eating a bacon sandwich every day increased the risk of bowel cancer by 20%.
Can you now suggest a more useful way of describing the increased risk?
Does your answer agree with Prof Spiegelhalter's calculations in the video?
Are you still as worried about the risk of eating bacon sandwiches? How have these calculations altered your views?
Why do you think that the newspaper decided to consider the relative risk, rather than the absolute risk?
If you want a reminder about relative and absolute risk, click the button underneath the video.
If you enjoyed this problem, you might want to have a go at Statins and Risk, which develops these ideas.
Understanding Uncertainty, Professor Spiegelhalter's website, has lots of articles about probability and risk that you might find interesting. There are some suggestions below, but there's lots more you can explore.
A man went to Monte Carlo to try and make his fortune. Is his strategy a winning one?
Two bags contain different numbers of red and blue marbles. A marble is removed from one of the bags. The marble is blue. What is the probability that it was removed from bag A?
A gambler bets half the money in his pocket on the toss of a coin, winning an equal amount for a head and losing his money if the result is a tail. After 2n plays he has won exactly n times. Has he more money than he started with?