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Dice Probabilities

Difficulty
Time Required Average (6-10 days)
Material Availability Readily available
Cost Very Low (under $20)
Safety No issues

Abstract

You're playing Monopoly with a friend, and you've already got Park Place and you really, really want to get Boardwalk. If you're on Pacific Avenue, what are the chances you'll reach your goal? Here's an easy project that will show you how to find out.

Objective

The purpose of this project is to test the probabilities of rolling certain combinations of dice in roll-playing games. Are you more likely to roll a sum of at least 18 with 3 ten-sided dice or 5 six-sided dice?

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MLA Style

Science Buddies Staff. "Dice Probabilities" Science Buddies. Science Buddies, 20 June 2014. Web. 30 Oct. 2014 <http://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-fair-projects/project_ideas/Math_p001.shtml>

APA Style

Science Buddies Staff. (2014, June 20). Dice Probabilities. Retrieved October 30, 2014 from http://www.sciencebuddies.org/science-fair-projects/project_ideas/Math_p001.shtml

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Last edit date: 2014-06-20

Terms and Concepts

In order to properly do this experiment, you will need to understand the basics of probability theory.

Bibliography

There are many sites on the internet that explain basic probability theory. This site takes you step by step through the basics that you will need to understand in order to estimate the likelihood of getting a certain outcome on the dice:
http://library.thinkquest.org/11506/learn.html

This site specifically talks about applying probability theory to rolling dice:
http://mathforum.org/library/drmath/view/56498.html

Materials and Equipment

  • 3 ten-sided dice
  • 5 six-sided dice

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Experimental Procedure

Procedures:
  • Roll each combination of dice 100 times.
  • Record the results of each roll.
  • Determine the probability of getting a sum higher than 18 for each combination of dice when rolling each combination 100 times.
  • Which combination has a higher probability and was this true when you rolled them?

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Variations

Test the probabilities of getting 21 using a deck of cards.

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