Year 12 mathematics

The International Centre of Excellence for Education in Mathematics recently released a report on Year 12 mathematics syllabi and examinations across Australia. It showed a wide divergence of content coverage and possibly standards across the number of mathematics courses.

The report was slightly complementary to New South Wales’ Mathematics Extension 2 (formerly 4-Unit Mathematics), which I did a long time ago.

NSW subject Mathematics Extension 2 is clearly more ambitious than the other seven: this is evident both from the syllabus and the examination paper. Extension 2 could be said generally to have a “pure mathematical tilt” to it, although there are certainly plenty of applications. The Extension 2 examination looks at such things as the irrationality of Euler’s number and pi, summing tricky series of binomial coefficients and proving intricate results about conic sections.

As an actuarial student, I would have preferred in the current 4-unit syllabus more linear algebra and less conic sections. And to improve the experience of all, have the textbooks and exams typeset in TeX. Do you agree?

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