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# Are MAT tests marked solely by the given solutions?

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1. Although I am applying to university next year, and will probably apply to Oxford, I decided just to have a go at the Specimen A paper for the MAT to get a feel of things, although I am saving most of the papers for when it gets closer to the date.

Even though I am probably leaning towards Computer Science, I may also consider Maths & Computer Science and thus attempted question 3 as well, although counted my overall total for questions 1, 2, 5, 6, 7.

My question is concerning whether the papers are marked directly against the solutions, or if an alternative but correct solution may be accepted.

For question 3, the solutions worked out the answers in terms of the derivative and shape of the function, while I used completing the square to determine the minimum value, although I still obtained the correct answers - just in a different way to them - and so would I have got the marks in the real MAT test or not?

Thanks
2. (Original post by some-student)
Although I am applying to university next year, and will probably apply to Oxford, I decided just to have a go at the Specimen A paper for the MAT to get a feel of things, although I am saving most of the papers for when it gets closer to the date.

Even though I am probably leaning towards Computer Science, I may also consider Maths & Computer Science and thus attempted question 3 as well, although counted my overall total for questions 1, 2, 5, 6, 7.

My question is concerning whether the papers are marked directly against the solutions, or if an alternative but correct solution may be accepted.

For question 3, the solutions worked out the answers in terms of the derivative and shape of the function, while I used completing the square to determine the minimum value, although I still obtained the correct answers - just in a different way to them - and so would I have got the marks in the real MAT test or not?

Thanks
The published solutions are separate to the mark scheme used by examiners, which is not made public. Similarly, in most exams at university level and beyond, detailed mark schemes are not published, as they could allow students to challenge incorrect marking, and if such allegations were proven, that could be damaging to the university's reputation.
3. (Original post by some-student)
My question is concerning whether the papers are marked directly against the solutions, or if an alternative but correct solution may be accepted.
Any correct solution will get you the marks. Most questions can be answered in lots of different ways.

Gavin
4. (Original post by gavinlowe)
Any correct solution will get you the marks. Most questions can be answered in lots of different ways.

Gavin
Ok, thanks very much

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Updated: October 10, 2016
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