As this is AP and IB testing week across the world, I took the
Calculus Mathematics IB SL Paper 1 exam yesterday. On Monday, I took AP US Govt. and on Tuesday I took AP Computer Science. Since this is only the first paper, I’m sure I’ll have more to say about the second paper when I take it later today too, but that’s another post.
First of all, it was only ten questions long. The specimen papers lead me to believe that it was going to be a long and atrocious exam. It wasn’t. The first 8 pages had write-in-the-book answers and then the last three were the extended multipart questions that were to be written on the answer sheets. One thing I really hated was having so much paper on my tiny little desk. The exam booklet is standard 8.5 by 11 paper but when opened, it takes up twice as much space horizontally on the desk. Having the answer document and also a scratch piece of paper side by side is not really possible. I didn’t even mention the formula packet yet. I had to have it under my answer book and move everything around when I wanted a quick refresh. Actually, it wasn’t helpful.
On to the questions. Since I don’t know how much I can say about the contents, I’ll be very ambiguous. The test actually had some derivatives and integrals on it. The specimen papers did not really have much in the way of that. The focus on vectors and trigonometry really murdered my score to say the least. One of the final questions concerned 3D vectors and there was a bunch of find the angle between them, find the k value, find the other line when so and so is parallel. Stuff like that. Anything involving trigonometry, I was lost. Otherwise, I wasn’t too struck by anything. There was this derivative problem which was sort of tricky, but it was an illusion.
My calculus teacher has her class setup so that next week we will go over the entire 10-problem packet. It will be work 100 points and it is open book, open resource except math teachers. So it’s a win-win situation next week.
That’s all I’ve got for the paper one section.