Education Technology

Leslie Matrices

Activity Overview

Introduction to Leslie Matrices. The TI-nspire activity file includes interactive Leslie Matrices and data extraction to monitor the different age groups associated with the Dung Beetle population. The student question sheet includes a range of questions to help students develop an understanding of each row and column in the matrix in addition to population variation and stabilisation. 


The purpose of this activity is to introduce Leslie matrices, it is an ideal starting point. Students explore a range of parameters to see how they impact long term population and population distribution for the dung beetle, including a collection of scenarios. 


  • Leslie Matrix
  • Population
  • Proportion
  • Eigenvalue (optional)
  • Eigenvector (optional)

About the Lesson

Students are provided with a TI-nspire file that allows them to immediately start exploring a Leslie matrix that models three different age classifications within dung beetles. A graph is also provided for the quantity of beetles in each age classification over time. Students explore the different parameters and initial populations to see how they impact long term numbers. An extension (optional) is included that briefly introduces the notion of Eigenvalues and Eigenvectors.