Discussion of the 2023 NHT Specialist Exams

This is our post for discussion of the 2023 NHT Specialist Mathematics exams, which have now been posted, here and here. We haven’t looked, and don’t particularly intend to, unless something is flagged.

UPDATE (11/10/23)

The reports are out, here and here (Word, idiots).

28 Replies to “Discussion of the 2023 NHT Specialist Exams”

  1. Exam 1:

    I can’t see any outright errors as of yet, and none of the questions look particularly objectionable to me, except for Q7.

    This exam seems incredibly long though.

      1. Don’t really have the heart right now to look at whatever CAS-abominations VCAA has created this time. Might do it later today if I have nothing else to do.

    1. Agreed on Q7, thought I was doing something wrong when I wasn’t getting the g on the exponential term.

        1. Never mind, found it. Errors are what I get for trying to power through as many of the exams in a day as I can.

  2. Paper 1 – length was OK, compared to previous NHT papers. A lot of working was required for 1 mark in a few places and the wording of some questions I found really weird compared to previous papers.

    Lines such as “give your answer in Cartesian form” instead of “in the form a+bi” I guess are OK(ish) but it doesn’t feel consistent.

    Q2c felt like it belonged on a Methods paper, but again, I guess no issues there.

    Q5, do they need to say that i^{2}=-1, or is this just assumed…?

    1. Thanks, RF.

      Isn’t “Cartesian form” standard terminology when doing complex stuff? I think assuming i = i is fine in Q5.

      1. I’m fine with the terminology, but would like it to be consistent across papers.

        Paper 2 Q2b says to give answers in the form a+bi. Paper 1 says “Cartesian form”.

        Fair enough if they were trying to test whether students understand that these are one and the same, but…

      1. Correct. The “2023” study design was put out so late I think the NHT classes had already begun their course.

        1. The new Study Design was implemented at the start of 2023, the NHT subjects began middle of 2022 and were therefore taught under the 2022 Study Design not the 2023 (new).

  3. Most of exam 2 seemed reasonable. MCQ10 has a typo with the unit the water flows out of the cone.

    1. Thanks, Alex. Maybe I’m blind, but what is the unit typo in MCQ10. Independent of any typo, I thought their picture of the cone full of water was pretty funny.

      1. Oh, never mind, time was in hours. Having h for depth of water and h for hours threw me off. It’s usually in seconds.

        1. Don’t sweat it. Any question that includes the phrase “where h meters is the depth” is open to criticism.

            1. Yes. I haven’t read through more than to consider the issues that people have raised, but the writing appears to be as appalling as ever.

                  1. No need. The Mathematics is about the same level. It is the language which I feel is poor and poorer than previous papers.

                    There are examples in just about every question.

      2. Yeah, the “as shown below.” should be attached to the second sentence. And the diagram should then be below that second sentence. I think all these exams might have been written on a dark and stormy night.

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