Mr Barton's Autograph videos - Statistics and Probability

TES Secondary maths resource collections

Collection Author: Craig Barton - Maths AST and creator of

Autograph is a piece of mathematical software that many schools have tucked away on their network somewhere, but that often only gets used to draw the odd straight line or curve. This is as big a crime as using an iPad as a coffee mat.

Autograph can do so much more, enabling you to dynamically demonstrate to your students topics as diverse as transformations, cumulative frequency diagrams, the fundamental theorem of calculus and the outcomes of rolling several dice. Autograph can be used with all ages and abilities, from primary school students right up to Further Mathematicians with eyes on a mathematics degree.

This collection is a series of videos put together by me which aim to give you a few ideas of how you could use Autograph in your classroom. You do have to put up with my annoying voice, but hopefully there will be enough tips and suggestions for beginners and advanced users to help you get over that. The videos can be downloaded, put on your school’s VLE, or simply watched online.

This particular set of videos covers Statistics and Probability. We look at how Autograph can be used to process and represent data from the web or Excel, whether it be grouped or in a messy raw form. We then start to investigate Probability, beginning with dice and balls in a bag, and going right up to introducing older students to the Binomial and Geometric Distributions.

A new video will be added each week, and if you have any requests for specific topics to be covered, just email me at teachers@mrbartonmaths.comand I will do my best to meet your requests.


1. Selection and Shapes

  • In this first video we look at the issue of Whiteboard Mode and how we go about creating basic shapes. Please Note: This is a good video to start with if you are unfamiliar with Autograph, regardless of the topic you are covering.

32. Autograph in 3D

  • In preparation for the next few videos, we take a look at some of the important tools needed for getting the most out of Autograph’s unique 3D engine.

57. Hiding Things!

  • An incredibly useful feature of Autograph is the ability to hide a variety of things. These include points, shapes and lines. In this video we look at how to hide objects and then suggest a few interesting applications for the classroom, involving transformations and the equations of lines. Now you see them, now you don’t!

58. The Keyboard

  • A feature of Autograph that many people are unaware of (or close down as quickly as possible!) is the Autograph Keyboard. In this video we take a look at some of the useful things that the Autograph keyboard can do, both in the program itself and in other applications. You emails may never be the same again!

59. Importing Images

  • Another incredibly useful feature of Autograph is the ability to import images onto the graph page. In this video we take a look at how easy it is to import images into Autograph, and then take a look at some potential lesson applications, including working out the equation of lines on the London Underground and helping out the Human Cannonball!


10. Working with Raw Data

  • Now we look at some of the things you can do with Raw Data, including dot plots and box and whisker diagrams. More stats to come next week!

11. Working with Raw Data - Part 2

  • Following a suggestion from none other than Autograph creator Douglas Butler, we take another look at some of the things you can do with Raw Data on Autograph, including quickly creating a data set.

12. Working with Raw Data - Part 3

  • Douglas Butler returns again! This time with a great suggestion for introducing the Normal Distribution via a look at the fascinating world of IQ. The also encompasses Autograph’s wonderful scaling option for nasty looking data!

13. Working with Raw Data - Part 4

  • In a jam-packed edition we start to look at how Autograph can group raw data for us and how this opens up a whole new set of possibilities in terms of mathematical diagrams, including cumulative frequency curves, histograms and stem and leaf.

15. Working with Grouped Data

  • In our final look at data for a while (you can have too much of a good thing) we tackle an issue with commas and how to alter the sizes of your groups.

16. Working with Grouped Data 2

  • This week we look at different ways of entering grouped data, another way of comparing data, and we take another look at the Results Box.

28. Scatter Diagrams

  • Seeing as we are now experts with straight line graphs, this week we look at how we can use Autograph to study Scatter Diagrams, Lines of Best Fit and Correlations.

29. Finding the Line of Best Fit

  • Following on from our work on Scatter Diagrams, we take a look at how the Line of Best Fit is calculated. This provides a valuable link from Key Stage 4 maths to A Level Statistics as Autograph is able to clearly demonstrate the method for finding the least squares regression line.

Probability and Probability Distributions

37. Extras – Dice Simulation

  • This week we take a look at one of the excellent Autograph Extras pages. The Dice Simulation page is fantastic for allowing your students to explore the concepts of experimental probability, sample sizes and distributions.

38. Extras – Monte Carlo Method

  • In this video we take a look at the second of Autograph’s wonderful Extras pages - the Monte Carlo Method. We see how this can be used to make an estimate for the value of pi, combining together important aspects of geometry and probability.

40. Biased Dice & Balls in a Bag

  • This week we take a look at how Autograph can be used to introduce students to the concept of experimental probability. You can very quickly set up a probability distribution function of your choice (fair dice, biased dice, numbered balls in a bag, you name it!), take samples of varying sizes, and create diagrams from the data. All of this may just help a tricky topic sink in a bit better.

41. Dice and the Binomial

  • In this video we continue our look at statistics and probability by seeing how Autograph can be used to introduce the concept of the binomial distribution. We look at the classic example of tossing a coin to create dot plots and box and whisker diagrams, and then we introduce a nice little twist…

42. Coins and the Geometric

  • Continuing our theme of all things statistical, this week we take a look at how Autograph might be used to introduce students to the concept of the Geometric Distribution, with a little helping hand from the Animation Controller!

Mr Barton’s Autograph videos - Graphing

Mr Barton’s Autograph videos - Shape, Space and Measure