Australian Bureau of Statistics

Rate the ABS website
ABS Home
ABS @ Facebook ABS @ Twitter ABS RSS ABS Email notification service
CensusAtSchool Australia

Education Services home page > CensusAtSchool home page > Year 10 Resources


Back to CensusAtSchool home page CaSQ 5 - Cause and Effect: Height and Dominant Hand Reaction Time

You can download this activity as a rich text file (RTF) using the link at the bottom of the page.

How to: Get a Random Sample from CensusAtSchool

Go to the CensusAtSchool Random Sampler and get a sample.

Reference year: (select year) Sample size: At least 20 students

Select questions: Height, Dominant Hand Reaction Time

Location: Select location Year level: Select a range of year levels.

To protect privacy there is a rule built into the sampler that the requested sample size cannot exceed 10% of the respondents for the parameters entered,

Please note: This task is designed to be completed by hand. It can also be completed using a computer or CAS calculator.


1. In your CensusAtSchool random sample, find the question about height, and the question about dominant hand reaction time, and enter both sets of twenty numbers as:
      two columns in Excel, or
      two separate lists in your CAS calculator, or
      as a table in your workbook
Outliers are any values which appear to be very different from the majority of the data. They are extreme values and may have been caused by an error. They should be removed from your data set and replaced with the next value from your list.

2. Create a scatter plot, with height as the independent variable (x) and dominant hand reaction time as the dependent variable (y).

3. Examine the linear relationship of your scatter plot. Circle or lightly shade the correlation of your scatter plot in the table below.

Strong Positive CorrelationWeak Positive CorrelationNo CorrelationWeak Negative CorrelationStrong Negative Correlation

4. Does your graph suggest a relationship between height and dominant hand reaction time? Explain.

5. If someone found there was a correlation between height and dominant hand reaction time, is this the same as saying a person’s reaction time is caused by their height? Explain.

6. Can height be used to predict dominant hand reaction time? Draw conclusions from your graph, and write a summary paragraph. Some key words to use are: random sample, linear, correlation, cause, effect.

Download the full activity:

Commonwealth of Australia 2008

Unless otherwise noted, content on this website is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 Australia Licence together with any terms, conditions and exclusions as set out in the website Copyright notice. For permission to do anything beyond the scope of this licence and copyright terms contact us.