Learning objects Triathlon: distance-time graphs


Watch triathletes performing in swimming, cycling and running legs of a triathlon. See how distance-time graphs are used to represent and compare race performances. Examine axis units, scales and gradients to compare course and performance variables. For example, notice that a flat line on a graph shows that an athlete is resting or preparing for the next stage. This learning object is one in a series of four objects.

Educational details

Key learning objectives
  • Students interpret distance-time graphs.
  • Students estimate speed from distance-time graphs.
Educational value
  • Demonstrates the structure and features of distance-time graphs by comparing performances of triathletes.
  • Illustrates how quantitative data relating to distance, time and speed can be extracted from distance-time graphs.
  • Illustrates how speed is related to the slope of lines in distance-time graphs.
Year level


Learning area
  • mathematics
  • Mathematics/Number and algebra
    • Mathematics/Lines
    • Mathematics/Variables
    • Mathematics/Number relationships
    • Mathematics/Pattern perception
    • Mathematics/Graphs
    • Mathematics/Data analysis
    • Mathematics/Data interpretation
    • Mathematics/Coordinates
    • Mathematics/Time
    • Analysis;
    • Application;
    • Comprehension;
    • Knowledge
    Student activity
    • Interactives;
    • Experiment;
    • Analysis;
    • Modelling;
    • Multiple choice questions;
    • Data manipulation and interpretation
    Learning design
    • Experiential learning;
    • Independent learning;
    • Problem solving;
    • Visual learning

    Other details

    • Technical implementer
    • Script writer
    • Name: Rod Rees
    • Organisation: Rees Films Pty Ltd
    • Address: Blackburn VIC Australia
    • Subject matter expert
    • Name: Howard Reeves
    • Address: Lindisfarne TAS Australia
    • Publisher
    • Date of contribution: 23 Dec 2015
    • Organisation: Education Services Australia
    • Address: Melbourne VIC 3000 Australia
    • URL: http://www.esa.edu.au/
    Access profile
    • Device independence
    • Hearing independence
    Learning resource type
    • Interactive Resource
    • Microsoft Internet Explorer - minimum version: 6.0 (MS-Windows) - maximum version: 8.0 (MS-Windows)
    • Firefox - minimum version: 3.0 (MS-Windows)
    • Safari - minimum version: 3.0 (MacOS)
    Operating systems
    • MacOS - minimum version: X
    • MS-Windows - minimum version: 2000 - maximum version: Vista
    • © 2015 Education Services Australia Ltd, except where indicated in Acknowledgements.