In the spreadsheet, perform the following operations:
- Input a population value into the box next to Initial Population on the spreadsheet. This population should be anything such as the people, animals, microorganisms, or plants.
- Input a rate of growth for your population into the box next to Rate 1. Since we are interested in a positive annual percent growth rate per year, this number should be greater than zero percent. Be sure to input this number in the form of a decimal.
- Repeat the above procedure for Rate 2 and Rate 3. Make sure that the values you select differ by two percent. For example, the values 0.01, 0.03, and 0.05 would be good choices.
- Under the Time (years) column, input three different year values. Make sure that your values increase by a minimum of ten years. For example, 10, 20, 30 years would be good choices. If you want to see a more dramatic change, select a longer time frame such as 10, 50, and 100 years.
- When you input all of your data, you’ll see that the spreadsheet has performed the calculations for the future size of each population, rate of growth, and time interval. Additionally, this information will be presented graphically in the chart. To draw an exponential curve for each series, do the following:
- Right click on the middle point for one of the series.
- Click on add trendline.
- Under Trendline Options, select Exponential.
- Click Close
- Repeat these steps for the other series.
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