Common Errors

IB Maths Studies: Common Errors

Common errors are both surprising and then not! There are bound to be things that are that much more difficult or that much more likely to be left out, but at the same time, if we know about them then we should be able to help students to avoid them. What follows is a list of common errors that has been put together from experience and from experience of other teachers and, significantly, from examiners reports. I have...

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Comments 2

Grant Fossum 24 October 2016 - 13:06

Can you help me understand the rule of sig figs on the new syllabus. I was trained under the old syllabus, did not teach for for years and this one still greatly confuses me even looking at the mark scheme. Are they better not to round, and do they still lose points for this? I see where you mention knowing the difference between sigs and decimal places which I like a lot, but what it the best advice for them taking the test about sig figs and how is it calculated now?

Jim Noble 6 November 2016 - 14:07

OK - Dont know if this is the best advice, but it is what I do...... Where students have calculated an answer they should write down the full calculator display AND THEN show the rounded answer stating the degree of accuracy in brackets is (3sf) unless otherwise required. This seems to me to sound practice and should keep students safe.... The situation has arisen (as I understand it) because examiners are not now marking whole papers where the accuracy penalty was being applied only once per paper. The rules are now more forgiving to help avoid a situation where multiple marks are lost for the same accuracy errors... That help?

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