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August 19, 2019, 02:20:51 pm

Author Topic: What are the essential methods topics?  (Read 230 times)  Share 

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h0wLze

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What are the essential methods topics?
« on: June 26, 2019, 08:43:24 pm »
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Hey everyone.

I plan on teaching myself Maths Methods units 1-4 during my 2 (or longer) year break from VCE completion to university. Even if it is hard, I will keep trying despite the difficulty. I have a decent foundation of algebra, quadratics and indices, even though I'm doing Further. The reason I actually went down was quite funny really, I thought I found pre-methods too easy, and as a result I didn't try at all until it was too late. Yikes. Anyway, I would like to learn the essential Maths Methods topics first (especially for Physics), and if I complete those sufficiently, I plan on completing the rest. I am prepared to work 2-3 hours a day on this. So, what do you gentlemen (or gentlewomen, lul) think the most important and necessary topics in Maths Methods are? Thanks.

Matthew_Whelan

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Re: What are the essential methods topics?
« Reply #1 on: June 26, 2019, 09:08:31 pm »
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Hey everyone.

I plan on teaching myself Maths Methods units 1-4 during my 2 (or longer) year break from VCE completion to university. Even if it is hard, I will keep trying despite the difficulty. I have a decent foundation of algebra, quadratics and indices, even though I'm doing Further. The reason I actually went down was quite funny really, I thought I found pre-methods too easy, and as a result I didn't try at all until it was too late. Yikes. Anyway, I would like to learn the essential Maths Methods topics first (especially for Physics), and if I complete those sufficiently, I plan on completing the rest. I am prepared to work 2-3 hours a day on this. So, what do you gentlemen (or gentlewomen, lul) think the most important and necessary topics in Maths Methods are? Thanks.
Calculus is particularly tricky and incorporates key skills and concepts used through Units 1-2 including algebra, indices, circular functions, and just makes it harder. Also, probability and statistics are the other big part. The VCAA website will also list every relevant topic or knowledge points required for methods.  ;)
2018: Psychology
2019: English, Methods, Chemistry, Biology, Physics

Eucalypt

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Re: What are the essential methods topics?
« Reply #2 on: July 01, 2019, 06:53:51 pm »
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Hey there,

I definitely agree with Matthew that Calculus and Probability are the hardest methods topics, and bring together most of your required knowledge. Some other things that might be good to focus on are composite functions and transformations of graphs as they often cause students strife. Something to consider would be why you are looking to learn the content (apart from a pure love of mathematics of course  ;)). If it is to prepare yourself for a uni course, then try to get information about what sort of maths you need to learn in that course and focus on those parts first. To do this, you would need to figure out what units you need to do, and have a look at their unit guides. These will explain all the content that you need to know.

I would focus on not only learning the content but also the background understanding, as then when you learn topics beyond the scope of Methods, it will be easier to understand. Eg. knowing how to differentiate is good, knowing where the formulas come from is even better.

Good luck, and let us know how it goes!  :)

SmellsLikeTeenSpirit

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Re: What are the essential methods topics?
« Reply #3 on: July 08, 2019, 09:26:32 pm »
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Hi Matthew,
There are different interpretations of "essential". This is a fraction of my analysis covering tests between 2006 and 2018:
1) If you rank the topics by the hardness, i.e. the % of students who solved them, the hardest one is inequality, followed by the problems where one has to find under which conditions equation has a single solution, and finding whether two events are dependent or independent. The easiest topic is finding a period of function, followed by finding the mean of a discrete random variable.
2) What I found interesting is that students have less success with problems involving geometry than with calculus or probability.
3) The topics that bring most points have been equations (linear, quadratic, trigonometric) and sketching functions.

Cheers
Nirvana


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