GATE | Gate IT 2007 | Question 1

Suppose there are two coins. The first coin gives heads with probability 5/8 when tossed, while the second coin gives heads with probability 1/4. One of the two coins is picked up at random with equal probability and tossed. What is the probability of obtaining heads ?
(A) 7/8
(B) 1/2
(C) 7/16
(D) 5/32


Answer: (C)

Explanation: Either 1st coin is selected or second coin is selected
Probability of 1st coin to be selected = ½
And probability of getting head on it = 5/8
Or
Probability of 2nd coin to be selected = 1/2
And pobability of getting head on 2nd coin = ¼
Probability of getting head (overall) = (Probability of selecting 1st coin * Probability of head on it) +(Probability of selecting 2nd coin * Probability of getting head on it) = (1/2)*(5/8) + (1/2)*(1/4) = 7/16

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