This module was developed for grades 9-12, but may be adapted to lower grades. Fighting disease takes every tool that scientists and medical researchers have – including mathematics! In this module, students use manipulatives (beans in a cup) to simulate a disease outbreak and to help develop an understanding of how mathematical disease models are created. In a second activity, students use real world health data and a computer data visualization tool to discover trends about malaria.
This module was designed with NIMBioS collaborator Hands On.
Materials Needed: Dry beans of 2 different colors, scratch paper for recording data, cups, computers, free gapminder software*, worksheet, calculator, pencil
*While there is an interface for Gapminder World available on the web, we recommend that you pre-download the Gapminder Desktop version when using this activity with multiple computers, due to heavy load and slowness on the server when many access the site at once.
Mathematics of Understanding Disease Module in action:
High School Scholars Visit NIMBioS
For further information, please contact:
Education and Outreach Coordinator
Ph: (865) 974-9364 Fax: (865) 974-9300
Associate Director for Education and Outreach
Ph: (865) 974-4270 (Math) (865) 974-9349 (NIMBioS) Fax: (865) 974-9300
NIMBioS, 1122 Volunteer Blvd., Suite 106
University of Tennessee
Knoxville, TN 37996-3410