Odds and Probability

Identifying the odds of something happening is a little different that calculating the probability. It is written as a ratio; however, it is not written as a fraction.


Odds

The odds in favor of an event is the ratio of the number of ways the outcome can occur to the number of ways the outcome cannot occur.

# of ways the event CAN occur : # of ways the event CANNOT occur.


This is actually a lot easier than probability. So, let's take a look at an example.

Example 1 - Odds


How to calculate the odds


Odds and probability is pretty easy! Just remember to use a colon instead of a fraction. Also, remember that you are comparing the number of ways the outcome can occur to the number of ways the outcome cannot occur (not the total outcomes).

Are you ready to try a problem on your own?

Practice Problem


You've entered your name into a drawing to win one of 25 prizes. There are 12 coupons for a free movie, 6, $25 coupons for a restaurant, 6 coupons for free admission into an amusement park, and 1 gift card for $100.

What are the odds of you winning:

  • the $100 gift card
  • restaurant coupons or amusement park coupons
  • not a free movie

Solutions




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