Predictions for the Calculator paper 2015
This is my best guess as to the topics that will be covered in the second paper. Notice it is just my best guess please don’t rely on this absolutely!
- Do a hard calculation using the calculator and show all of the digits from the screen then round it
- Compound interest. In recent year they have split the question so it might say in the first year the interest rate is 5% and then in all the years that follow it is 3%. They have also asked questions comparing simple and compound interest.
- Reverse percentage
- Equivalence of decimals, fractions and percentages.
- Ratios. Read the question carefully!
- A context question with calculations such as percentages and fractions – check your QWC
- Proportion eg S is proportional to the square of t
- Bounds calculations. Pick out the right combination of upper and lower bounds for the calc.
- Trial and improvement
- Solve a quadratic using the formula
- There is usually a page of algebra involving factorising, expanding, simplifying and solving etc
- Forming an equation from a situation and then solving it. Eg the sides are given algebraically and you are given the value of the perimeter.
- An algebraic proof question
- Completing the square (and maybe using it to find the lowest value an expression can produce)P
- Plotting a harder graph eg a quadratic curve. Or maybe finding the equation of a line through two points.
Shape and space
- Trigonometry and Pythagoras’ – possibly questions that disguise the technique required
- Advanced trig – sine rule and cosine rules and don’t forget the area formula
- Similar triangles question. Or prove that the triangles are congruent with ASA, SAS, SSS, RHS etc
- Area of circle in some form e.g. find the area of a sector
- Loci –construct a triangle using compasses, the perpendicular bisector, the angle bisector, points that are equidistant from a point and also from a line
- Volumes and surface areas of solids – could involve similar solids, so make sure you know how the scale factors are related to each other.
- Vectors – often set up within a triangle; make sure you can work out the vector for the third side if you know the other two.
Statistics and Probability
- Averages from a frequency table or a grouped frequency table
- A more basic graph type such as a Pie chart or a frequency polygon
- Tree diagram or sample space diagram eg Possible to have a two dice question or an equivalent