HSC 2021 maths exam confuses students with question on emus and goannas

HSC 2021 maths exam confuses students with question on emus and goannas
HSC 2021 maths exam confuses students with question on emus and goannas

With their study interrupted by almost two years of a global pandemic, those facing the NSW HSC maths exam on Monday could have been forgiven for hoping for something a bit more straightforward. 

At the very least, they did not expect a question about emu and goanna legs - but that is what they got.

The question involved simultaneous equations and required students to calculate a total number of goanna and emu legs. 

The emu (pictured) may be a beloved Australian symbol, but few were expecting it to feature in a HSC maths exam

The emu (pictured) may be a beloved Australian symbol, but few were expecting it to feature in a HSC maths exam

Given the world is still in the midst of Covid-19 it would have been more topical to make the creatures bats and pangolins, each of whom has been blamed for the coronavirus outbreak, but they kept it local with emus and goannas. 

A commenter on a Facebook HSC page said they were confident because of last year's paper that this one would be less difficult, 'but that was destroyed quickly'.

They were referring to what happened in 2020 when pupils got questions they had not been taught. 

One commenter may have been exaggerating  slightly, though, when he posted 'Don’t you love it when 2021 4u is 10x harder than 2020.'

Last year's exam required students to use concepts which had been taught to advanced mathematics classes but not to those in the standard course. 

Karen McDaid, the vice president of the Mathematical Association of NSW said last year's exam had left many upset. 

She said the association told the New South Wales Education Standards Authority not to let that happen again. 

'They have promised they will go through a more rigorous process but we won't know until after [the exam happens],' Ms McDaid said. 

Maths classes featuring one of Australia's national symbols and a lizard may or may not have been taught as part of the school curriculum throughout NSW in 2021.

Not many people remember what was on their final maths exam once they leave school, but the HSC class of 2021 may just remember it forever.   

So would YOU pass high school today? As Year 12 students start their final exams, a look at modern-day questions proves how tough they've REALLY got it 

By Brittany Chain 

Almost 70,000 students in NSW began their Higher School certificate exams this week, the culmination of 13 years of education.

The exams were postponed for four weeks due to Covid lockdown, but began on Monday when 62,000 sat their English exam.

Adults may scoff at the intensity of the three-week exam period, but the tests are designed to be tough.

So, how would you go with answering last year's HSC questions for these key subjects?

For almost 70,000 17 and 18-year-old kids from New South Wales, sitting their HSC marks the most stressful time of their lives to date. Pictured: A student at Sydney Secondary College completing her English exam

For almost 70,000 17 and 18-year-old kids from New South Wales, sitting their HSC marks the most stressful time of their lives to date. Pictured: A student at Sydney Secondary College completing her English exam

STANDARD MATHEMATICS, 2020

There are four levels of mathematics subjects students can choose to take, the easiest of which is Mathematics Standard 1.

Students are given two hours to answer 30 questions for a potential total of 80 marks. They're allowed a calculator, and certain questions require them to show their reasoning and calculations.

The first 10 questions are multiple choice, beginning with identifying which shape has the most vertical edges and working up in difficulty to choosing the correct scatterplot data sets.

One of the questions worth just three marks in the 2020 standard paper is as follows:

The time in Melbourne is 11 hours ahead of Coordinated Universal Time (UTC). The time in Honolulu is 10 hours behind UTC. A plane departs from Melbourne at 7pm on Tuesday and lands in Honolulu 9 hours later. What is the time and day in Honolulu when the plane lands?

The correct way to answer the question, according to the marking criteria, is as follows

Time

read more from dailymail.....

NEXT Australia: Terrifying moment teenager forced to ground gunpoint police BMW ...