EXT1 Teachers … updates you will want to know


The SmarterMaths platform is quick on its feet. We adjust our database in real time and can make significant improvements in the quality of our content as soon as better information comes to light.

The release of further Topic Guidance documents and more sample exam questions has provided quality information for the growth of our question databases, particularly in new syllabus courses.

One important change worth noting is that the database now includes EQ-Bank titled questions. This stands for “exemplar question bank”. If syllabus or Topic Guidance documents point to a deficiency in our database, we will use this information to create EQ-Bank questions to supplement the topic area.

Without further ado, recent developments are summarised below …

S1 Normal Approximations of Sample Proportions

  • The NESA sample Ext1 exam unsurprisingly uses a section of a z-score probability table as a reference within the question. This is necessary, in our view, to test this topic adequately.
  • Our database now has 60 minutes worth of exam quality questions in this area, and a full z-score probability table will now appear at the start of your worksheet if any question on this topic is chosen.

V1 Vectors

  • Our database has been beefed up significantly to around 3 hours of questions, and the number of categories has expanded with “Vectors and Geometry” now a seperate stand alone sub-topic.
  • Vectors and Geometry now includes numerous proofs, including those specifically mentioned in the syllabus document.
  • The revision of Vectors and Projectile motion is problematic in our view. While the NESA Ext1 sample exam provided a lower band test of the topic (which didn’t require any use of vector notation), the topic guidance suggests the HSC examiners can throw the kitchen sink at students, in much the same way as the old projectile motion was examined in Ext1, albeit with vector notation.
  • Our database is now over 60 minutes and looks at a spectrum of difficulty levels, including some Victorian examples (which we have copyright for reproducing).

A1 Combinatorics

  • Permutations and Combinations is now supplemented with 4 specific pigeonhole questions. This question type gets a big chunk of syllabus real estate and the database now reflects this.
  • Binomial expansion is now supplemented with numerous combinatorial proof questions that are specifically mentioned in the syllabus, as well as examples informed by the NESA Topic Guidance release in this area.
  • We note that we have received some feedback that calculating specific co-efficients within a binomial expansion is not examinable. This question type appears in the topic guidance exemplar questions and our current view is that it should be covered.

T2 Trigonometry

  • NESA Topic Guidance exemplar questions suggest the potential of higher difficulty questions than those that have appeared in the past (noting that Simple Harmonic Motion is no longer an examiner avenue to test this area within Ext1).
  • This is reflected in the most recent additions to the question database in this area.

T3 Trigonometry

  • General solution. Not required but you can be asked to find “all the values” of an angle that satisfy a trig equation, as was the case in the NESA Ext1 sample exam.
  • We recommend finding the values within a domain [0, 2pi] and adding integer multiples of 360 degrees. T3 EQ-Bank 3 has been added to cover this.

SmarterMaths is now in a majority of NSW high schools.

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Thanks and regards,

Matt Burgess

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