Institute of Education Study Notes

Friday, 22nd February, 2019

Academic Zone

Maths Paper 2 (H): A very tough and demanding paper

Reaction to Leaving Cert 2018 Maths Paper 2 (Higher Level) by Aidan Roantree, Senior Maths teacher at The Institute of Education.

A very demanding paper. To move beyond a H4 or a H5 would have required students to have a very good understanding of and versatility with the maths material. Section B was especially tough. The headline surprise is the inclusion of a question on financial maths on Paper 2. This normally appears exclusively on Paper 1. Overall, a few notable points were: there was only one question on co-ordinated geometry (there are normally 2); Also, the most difficult of the geometry proofs was asked, The Proof of Theorem 12. The B part of Question 8 was a completely new in depth analysis of the Margin of Error Approximation, which was very tough.

Section A:
All in all Section A was by far the nicer part of the paper. Unusually there were three questions on probability and statistics, but only 1 on coordinated geometry.

Question 1 on the expected value in probability was a nice question although no table was given, students had to construct their own.

Question 2 on statistics dealt with the normal curve and Z scores. Topics that students should be familiar with.

Question3 was an unusual variation that concerned arrangements and included a part on the algebraic manipulation of factorials.

Question 4 was a very fair question on trigonometry. The A part was a standard trig equation and the B part concerned manipulating trig identities.

Question 5 was a coordinate geometry question, which was very fair, with the exception of a slightly complication in the C part.

Question 6 concerned geometry and was tough. The A part demanded The Proof of Theorem 12, and part B involved a challenging cut based on this theorem.

Section B
Question 7 was the nicest question in Section B, although it was very wide ranging. It covered areas and volumes and geometric and arithmetic sequences and series and a little trig.

Question 8 was a major question on statistics and financial maths. The A part was quite approachable for most students. The B part however was an in depth investigation of the standard error of proportion and the margin of error approximation. The C part was on financial maths, a major surprise and very tough as well, as it involved an increasing savings.

Question 9 was a shorter question on trigonometry and although it started with a couple of relatively easy parts, it soon became extremely difficult.

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Aidan Roantree

About Aidan Roantree

Aidan Roantree is senior maths teacher at The Institute of Education, where he has been teaching maths and applied maths for 25 years. The author of 12 major maths books, Aidan is currently putting the finishing touches to a new series of text books, covering the new Project Maths syllabus.

View all posts by Aidan Roantree →

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