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Review of 2021 HSC Maths Extension 1 Exam Paper

by Martin Gossow - Prime Education


  • Brief overview of the 3U Exam from 2021. Also make comparisons to the 2U exam.


Exam Overview

  • 36 questions, 70 marks
  • 3.3 minutes per question, or 1.7 minutes per mark


Mark Distribution

  • 10 multiple choice questions
  • Most other questions between 2 and 4 marks
  • Some of the 6-mark and 4-mark questions are further divided.
  • Question 11 tends to be lower
  • Sometimes very last question can have a large number of marks, but that didn’t happen this year


Topic Distribution

  • Functions remains most prominent topic, but usually smaller number of marks
  • Vectors and Integration questions are worth a large number of marks
  • Permutations and Combinations (labelled counting), played a prominent role last year, but not this year
  • Stats plays a much smaller role, it seems like this is being moved to 2U
  • Induction is usually only one question, but worth a large number of marks


Year 11 vs Year 12 Content

  • 42% of Questions based on Year 11 content, but only 34% of marks.
  • Hence, questions are worth less marks, but many of the ideas are still important to Year 12 questions.
  • Just like in 2U, these questions are often harder than you may be used to.

  • This is a brief overview of the topics you need to know from Year 11!
  • Permutations and Combinations is the topic students have often forgotten, or were never fully taught.
  • Functions and trigonometry remains the most important topics. This is carried across in 2U as well, so focus on these!