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Exam tips / advice / information Maths SL

1. Do not give up too easily on a question. Sometimes it is a good idea to move on to another
question and return later to one that you found difficult.
2. Time management / pacing is very important during the examination and too much time spent
on a difficult question may mean that you do not have enough time to complete other questions.
3. If you mae a mistae dra! a single line through the !or that you !ant to replace. Do not
cross out the !or until you have replaced it !ith something you consider "etter.
#. Include relevant explanations / notes !ith your alge"raic !or.
$. Do not try to save time "y taing alge"raic shortcuts. %e careful !ith alge"raic manipulations.
&. It is "est to mae diagrams and graphs large ' clearly dra!n !ith all appropriate la"els.
(. If an exact ans!er is not too difficult or tedious to o"tain then it is "est to give the exact ans!er.
)ther!ise give an approximate ans!er to an accuracy of three significant figures.
*. +hec for ey !ords/phrases ' such as ,hence-. ,sho! that-. ,!rite do!n-. etc. /nderlining
ey !ords/phrases !hen you first read a question can "e helpful.
0. 1uestions !ith the phrase ,sho! that- give you the ans!er and as you to sho! ho! the
ans!er is o"tained from the given information ' "e clear and complete. Do 2)T !or
"ac!ards ' that is. do not start !ith the ans!er and !or "ac to the given information. Since
the ans!er is given to you. your !or !ill "e mared only for 3method4 and 3reasoning4.
5ence. you should expect to include some !ords of explanation !ith your !oring.
16. 7xam questions are often !ritten in a !ay so that. even if you cannot get the ans!er to one
part. you can still ans!er later parts. This is especially true for Section % 8extended9response
11. %e completely familiar !ith the ;ath S< Information %oolet 8formula "oolet:. =ou are
given a 3ne!4 copy of it !hen you tae the exams. =ou cannot tae your o!n copy into the
12. >hen ans!ering a trig question. "e sure to chec that your calculator is set to the correct angle
mode ' degrees or radians.
13. %e familiar !ith common error messages that your calculator may display.
1#. ?raphs displayed on a ?D+ may "e misleading ' so mae sure that !hat you see maes sense.
1$. %e sure your ?D+ has ne! "atteries for the exam.
1&. 1uestions in each section 8Section @ and Section %: are roughly in order of difficulty.
Therefore. questions A1 and A2 in Section @ should "e easier than questions A& and A( in
Section @. <ie!ise. the first question in Section % 8usually A*. sometimes A0: should "e
easier than the last question in Section % 8usually A16. sometimes A11:.
1(. 1uestions in Section @ 8short9response questions: are generally testing you on only one or t!o
sylla"us items.
1*. 1uestions in Section % 8extended9response questions: are generally testing you on t!o or more
sylla"us items. The question !ill al!ays have multiple parts and often results from one part
may "e needed in a later part.
10. Since you are not allo!ed a ?D+ on Baper 1 the questions on this exam !ill focus on analytic /
alge"raic / 3thining4 solutions. %e extra careful !ith arithmetic and alge"raic computations
"ecause you4re not a"le to do a chec !ith your ?D+.
26. )n Baper 2. if you solve an equation "y means of a graph on your ?D+ you must provide a
clearly la"elled setch of the graph in your !or ' and indicate exactly !hat equation you
solved on your ?D+.
21. 7ven though a ?D+ is ,required- on Baper 2. do 2)T assume that you !ill need to use your
?D+ on every question on Baper 2C or every part of every question.
22. Do 2)T use any calculator notation in your !ritten solution. Dor example. if you are
computing the value of the derivative of function f for 2 x = on your ?D+. do 2)T !rite
nDeriv(Y,X,3)=6. =ou should !rite ( ) 3 & f =
or &
= !hen 3 x = . )ther examples
include not !riting do!n calculator commands for statistical computations. such as
normalcdf and invNormal.
23. If you do use your ?D+ to o"tain an ans!er for a question on Baper 2. "e sure that you clearly
!rite do!n the appropriate mathematical 3set9up4 for the computation you !ill perform on your
2#. There !ill definitely "e some questions on Baper 2 !here it !ill "e more efficient and easier to
find the ans!er "y using your ?D+ rather than an analytic/alge"raic method. @fter reading a
question on Baper 2. the first question you need to as yourself is !hether using a ?D+ is
appropriate in helping to find the solution. Do not lose valua"le time "y choosing to ans!er a
question using a tedious analytic method !hen you could get the ans!er quicly "y using your
2$. 7xamples !here a ?D+ !ould "e needed include finding the inverse of a 3 E 3 matrix or
o"taining the standard deviation for a set of data. 7xamples of questions that !ill 2)T appear
on Baper 1 include calculations of "inomial coefficients in alge"ra. and statistics questions
requiring the use of ta"les.
2&. In trigonometry. you are expected to "e familiar !ith the characteristics of the sin. cos and tan
curves. including no!ledge of the ratios of ( ) 6 . 06 . 1*6

o o o
. etc.
2(. 2ot all questions on Baper 2 !ill necessarily require the use of the ?D+. There !ill "e
questions !here a ?D+ is not needed and others !here its use is optional. There !ill "e some
questions that cannot "e ans!ered !ithout a ?D+.
2*. Do not sip doing easy simplifications. Dor example. do not leave an ans!er of
or sin06
20. It is very important to clearly sho! your !or for each question on "oth Baper 1 and Baper 2.
Fno! that correct ans!ers given !ithout sufficient !oring may not earn full mars. Trying to
use a correct method. even if you do not get the correct ans!er. !ill often earn you some
method mars.
36. =our exam paper is mared "y a teacher 8hired "y the I% as an 3examiner4:. The examiner is
looing to give you mars. so mae his/her Go" easier "y !riting your solutions clearly and
completely. It4s al!ays !orth maing an attempt to sho! some reasona"le !or for a question.
=ou cannot lose mars for incorrect !or.
31. =our !or for questions in Section @ must "e !ritten on the same page as the question. =ou
may continue your solution "elo! the dashed lines.
32. =our !or for questions in Section % must "e !ritten on separate ans!er sheets. =ou must start
the solution for each question in Section % on a ne! ans!er sheet.
33. 7at "reafast H