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1.3.1 Numeracy Skill

Numeracy measures arithmetic, mathematical or quantitative skills required to perform the job competently.

Table 1.3.1 Numeracy Skill


Numeracy is not a requirement.


Requires basic numeracy such as counting, recording numbers, simple addition and subtraction (possibly with use of an adding machine or calculator), handling small amounts of money (eg ticket office sales, cashier), or reading simple instruments (eg meter).


Requires numeracy to a level where; more complicated computations can be made (eg calculation of percentages, discounts, markups, proportions, area, circumference, volume), where basic algebra and geometry concepts can be applied, or where substantial amounts of cash are handled (eg teller), or interpretation of numbers such as averages can be made, or simple charts, graphs or tables can be drawn or interpreted.


Numeracy to a level where quantitative information can be interpreted from more complex charts, graphs and statistical figures; and where numerical relationships between several factors can be interpreted. Most senior executive positions would be at this level.


Numeracy to a level where detailed calculations need to be made: ie ability to apply concepts such as probability, game theory, analysis of variance, correlation, sampling theory, factor analysis, tests of reliability and validity, and statistical inference. Where concepts such as exponents, logarithms, quadratic equations, permutations, and fundamentals of plane and solid geometry and trigonometry could be applied, eg navigational, surveying, and more complex financial calculations including share and commodity trading system computations.


Numeracy to a level where complex calculations need to be performed: usually requiring use of computer-based algorithms or sophisticated instruments, and complex measuring methods; ability to comprehend and apply principles such as advanced calculus, such as differential equations, and statistical theory. Such jobs include actuary, statistician, consulting engineer, astronomer, physicist.


Numeracy at an advanced level, usually applicable only in research situations where complex mathematical methods need to be developed, or theories developed or tested, or where both interpretation of results and critique of the underlying assumptions and methodology used are required.

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