11 Real-Life Examples Of Probability To Understand It Better

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Have you ever seen a weather forecast? How does it show that there is a ‘probability’ of rain and a ‘chance’ of thunderstorm? This can be one classic example of probability in real life! Although the concept of probability can be inculcated by various online games and board games, however, learning probability may not be complete without going through a set of real-life examples.

Therefore, in this post, we will understand how probability as a concept is used in our everyday life. Check out these examples to understand where the probability concept can be actually applicable. 

Examples of probability- Possibilities in daily life

Probability is all around us; we can notice it by digging into the actual idea behind events happening. Here are a few examples:

1. Flipping a coin

Flipping a coin

Learning probability often starts with an example of a flipped coin. It is one of the simplest forms of example with just two outcomes-head or tails. Not only in the classroom, but a flipped coin also plays an important role in deciding the start of games like cricket and baseball. Each side of the coin has an equal probability of 50% which gives equal chance for the two teams to win the toss. 

2. Stocks and Mutual Funds

Stocks and Mutual Funds

Investing in stocks, mutual funds, and other assets is often linked to the investor’s forecast. The individual may subjectively determine that an asset can give a profit of 13% in the coming year. Coming to personal conclusions, the person can decide if they should invest in the asset. 

3. Natural Calamities

Disaster management departments often work to determine if there is a chance of any natural disaster in the coming hours or days. These results are used to make any decision regarding the public. For example: if the department feels that the chances of a storm are high, they may plan to evacuate people in the most affected areas. 

4. Lottery/Bingo Tickets

Lottery/Bingo tickets

Chances of winning a lottery or games like Bingo can be estimated through probability. If all the numbers on the ticket are obtained, then the player wins. While the fraction in these cases is too small- say around 1 in thousands, but is an interesting example to comprehend. 

5. Elections

Elections

Discerning who would be the next winner can be forecasted with a series of probability calculations. There are some platforms like FiveThirtyEight that make such estimations. These opt for multiple factors in their calculations like recent polls, social status, and debates. They give out their views like “Party 1 has a chance of 50% to win, while Party 2 has 30% chances”. 

6. Insurance Companies

Insurance Companies

Insurance companies make eminent use of probability calculations to determine how much coverage can be given to a particular person. They consider factors like age, medical history, and current health status before drafting a report. This is the reason why the amount of coverage reduces with age and increases with higher premiums.

7. Traffic

Traffic

The intensity of traffic is often a lesser noticed probable event. Depending on multiple factors like place, time, and weather conditions. One can make out the subjective probability that the maximum traffic can be seen in morning and evening hours because this is the time when employees usually traverse between home and office. 

8. Decks

Decks

Decks of cards can be easily manipulated to learn probability calculations. This pile of 52 cards can give about endless iterations. For instance, the chance of picking a queen is 4 out of 52 chances. Similarly, the chance of making a three-card set is 1 in 132,600. With such a range in chances, this can be a good example.

9. Game/event  Polling

For any trending match movie, television channels and reputed organizations conduct opinion polls about what is going to be the result. Say, for a game 45% of people may feel that the country will lose. These polls are often useful to get a general idea about what public opinion is towards an important topic. 

10. Weather Forecasting

Weather forecasting

Calculating the probable weather is common before making any plans. Say a family has planned for a road trip on bikes, they often make estimations like there are more chances (80%) to be sunny, so they can go. Making decisions here is also affected by factors like the weather report, past experience, and history. Professionals consider factors like humidity, temperature, and pressure too. 

11. Event Planning

Event Planning

Planning an event needs the manager to be aware of how many people may be attending. This implies they should focus on the probability of people. For this, they consider factors like season, time, location, and supply of items. Event managers seldom indulge in these estimations to ensure proportionate serving staff during the event. 

Strategies to learn probability- Tips to follow along with examples

Preparation for probability doesn’t often end with just definition and examples. You can consider a set of other pedagogies and strategies to make sure you have a better grip on this concept. Here are a few insights:

  • Indulge in probability-related activities. Doing an iterative practice with daily life objects like coins, decks, and dice can hone the abilities.
  •  Use your free time for online games. With the increase in technology, most of the features are just a click away. You may check out free online game options to add value to your pastime. 
  • Play board games that stipulate probability concepts. Most of us may like filling up pass time on board games. Choosing board games like horse racing, Skunk bingo, and Sagrada board games can help you traverse through the concept as you relish. 

Before we wind up 

Many math concepts have a significant role in real life. With the endless application, we can now assess how greatly this concept is used in our everyday life. If you are an educator or parent and struggling with explaining the concept of probability to your younger one, you can begin by picking up a few examples from above, and now telling them the nitty-gritty of the concept. Diving deep into probability can make you and your younger ones easily master higher-order concepts effortlessly later. 


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