Product Code Check Digits

Teaching students
Teaching educators

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Product Code Check Digits

Key question

  • Who checks their reciept at a shop to make sure it matches your purchases?

What is a product code?

More check digits

  • Where else are check digits used?
  • Where else is it important that the right number is used?

Where check digits are used

  • Products
  • Event tickets
  • Bank accounts
  • Passports
  • Loyalty cards
  • Credit cards
  • Warehouses to track inventory
  • Invoicing and packaging slips
  • And many other places

What could happen if check digits weren't used?

  • Charged for the wrong item
  • Not let into an event we had paid for
  • Money going into the wrong accounts
  • Mistaken identity when travelling
  • Not getting rewards we are due
  • The wrong person being charged
  • The right products not being available
  • Products arriving in the wrong places

Follow up discussion/activity

Can you create your own formula for a product check code?

If you do, think about the following things:

  • How long will your product code be?
  • What formula will you use to create the check digit?
  • Could you use addition instead of multiplication in your formula?

Supporting Resources