# do you still get marks for using A Level methods and formula at GCSE

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will edexcel examiners still give you marks for using methods that you learn at a level like logs for example if it still leads to the correct answer for example if a question says 7 to the power of n = 343 can i use logs to find it is that an acceptable method if i got the right answer out of it

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#2

(Original post by

will edexcel examiners still give you marks for using methods that you learn at a level like logs for example if it still leads to the correct answer for example if a question says 7 to the power of n = 343 can i use logs to find it is that an acceptable method if i got the right answer out of it

**liamlarner**)will edexcel examiners still give you marks for using methods that you learn at a level like logs for example if it still leads to the correct answer for example if a question says 7 to the power of n = 343 can i use logs to find it is that an acceptable method if i got the right answer out of it

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(Original post by

This question would most probably be on a non-calculator paper. In general, as long as you use a correct method you'll get the marks.

**Muttley79**)This question would most probably be on a non-calculator paper. In general, as long as you use a correct method you'll get the marks.

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#4

(Original post by

i do edexcel igcse all are calc papers so could i teach myself how to use logs for the exam incase that question came up i was just wondering cus logs are not on my spec whether i can still get the marks for them

**liamlarner**)i do edexcel igcse all are calc papers so could i teach myself how to use logs for the exam incase that question came up i was just wondering cus logs are not on my spec whether i can still get the marks for them

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(Original post by

There's no need to learn logs. All questions on your paper can be done using IGCSE methods and most of the time the IGCSE method will be the quickest approach.

**Sir Cumference**)There's no need to learn logs. All questions on your paper can be done using IGCSE methods and most of the time the IGCSE method will be the quickest approach.

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#6

Exams are designed to test your ability to solve problems using known and correct mathematical methods. I'd be amazed if you were marked down due to your having knowledge beyond the requirements of the specifications. Another example could be finding the stationary point of a quadratic. In the GCSE this would usually require completing the square, but as you know, differentiation is more likely to produce a solution more efficiently (from memory, the iGCSE includes this method).

With reference to the use of logs, a compound interest/loss question asking how long before (eg) a car has lost half its value would usually require a trial and improvement method whereas using logs would give the result instantly.

There is some debate around whether using a classwizz calculator to solve (eg) simultaneous or quadratic equations etc instantly should be afforded full marks . IMHO, unless the question specifically requires all working out to be shown, full marks should be awarded for providing the required solutions. After all, part of the exam being a calculator paper involves testing whether you know how to use your calculator to good effect. It isn't your fault if the examiners don't make it abundantly clear of what they expect to see for you to attain full marks. Since the classwizz calculator is a permitted piece of equipment, then it seems entirely reasonable for you to be allowed to show that you know how to use it! (Indeed, as you will soon find out as you progess through your A level, only a lunatic would waste their time using the quadratic formula to solve such relatively mundane equations when the goal is to use the results for other more cerebral purposes)

After all, if you went to see a professional pianist give a recital, it would be unreasonable for you to ask for your money back if they didn't precede their performance with a complete rendition of all of the relevant scales that they had to practise over the years, coupled with a lecture on the theories of music utilised in order to play the piece perfectly.

With reference to the use of logs, a compound interest/loss question asking how long before (eg) a car has lost half its value would usually require a trial and improvement method whereas using logs would give the result instantly.

There is some debate around whether using a classwizz calculator to solve (eg) simultaneous or quadratic equations etc instantly should be afforded full marks . IMHO, unless the question specifically requires all working out to be shown, full marks should be awarded for providing the required solutions. After all, part of the exam being a calculator paper involves testing whether you know how to use your calculator to good effect. It isn't your fault if the examiners don't make it abundantly clear of what they expect to see for you to attain full marks. Since the classwizz calculator is a permitted piece of equipment, then it seems entirely reasonable for you to be allowed to show that you know how to use it! (Indeed, as you will soon find out as you progess through your A level, only a lunatic would waste their time using the quadratic formula to solve such relatively mundane equations when the goal is to use the results for other more cerebral purposes)

After all, if you went to see a professional pianist give a recital, it would be unreasonable for you to ask for your money back if they didn't precede their performance with a complete rendition of all of the relevant scales that they had to practise over the years, coupled with a lecture on the theories of music utilised in order to play the piece perfectly.

Last edited by dextrous63; 1 year ago

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#7

(Original post by

Exams are designed to test your ability to solve problems using known and correct mathematical methods. I'd be amazed if you were marked down due to your having knowledge beyond the requirements of the specifications. Another example could be finding the stationary point of a quadratic. In the GCSE this would usually require completing the square, but as you know, differentiation is more likely to produce a solution more efficiently (from memory, the iGCSE includes this method).

With reference to the use of logs, a compound interest/loss question asking how long before (eg) a car has lost half its value would usually require a trial and improvement method whereas using logs would give the result instantly.

There is some debate around whether using a classwizz calculator to solve (eg) simultaneous or quadratic equations etc instantly should be afforded full marks . IMHO, unless the question specifically requires all working out to be shown, full marks should be awarded for providing the required solutions. After all, part of the exam being a calculator paper involves testing whether you know how to use your calculator to good effect. It isn't your fault if the examiners don't make it abundantly clear of what they expect to see for you to attain full marks. Since the classwizz calculator is a permitted piece of equipment, then it seems entirely reasonable for you to be allowed to show that you know how to use it! (Indeed, as you will soon find out as you progess through your A level, only a lunatic would waste their time using the quadratic formula to solve such relatively mundane equations when the goal is to use the results for other more cerebral purposes)

After all, if you went to see a professional pianist give a recital, it would be unreasonable for you to ask for your money back if they didn't precede their performance with a complete rendition of all of the relevant scales that they had to practise over the years, coupled with a lecture on the theories of music utilised in order to play the piece perfectly.

**dextrous63**)Exams are designed to test your ability to solve problems using known and correct mathematical methods. I'd be amazed if you were marked down due to your having knowledge beyond the requirements of the specifications. Another example could be finding the stationary point of a quadratic. In the GCSE this would usually require completing the square, but as you know, differentiation is more likely to produce a solution more efficiently (from memory, the iGCSE includes this method).

With reference to the use of logs, a compound interest/loss question asking how long before (eg) a car has lost half its value would usually require a trial and improvement method whereas using logs would give the result instantly.

There is some debate around whether using a classwizz calculator to solve (eg) simultaneous or quadratic equations etc instantly should be afforded full marks . IMHO, unless the question specifically requires all working out to be shown, full marks should be awarded for providing the required solutions. After all, part of the exam being a calculator paper involves testing whether you know how to use your calculator to good effect. It isn't your fault if the examiners don't make it abundantly clear of what they expect to see for you to attain full marks. Since the classwizz calculator is a permitted piece of equipment, then it seems entirely reasonable for you to be allowed to show that you know how to use it! (Indeed, as you will soon find out as you progess through your A level, only a lunatic would waste their time using the quadratic formula to solve such relatively mundane equations when the goal is to use the results for other more cerebral purposes)

After all, if you went to see a professional pianist give a recital, it would be unreasonable for you to ask for your money back if they didn't precede their performance with a complete rendition of all of the relevant scales that they had to practise over the years, coupled with a lecture on the theories of music utilised in order to play the piece perfectly.

*Without sufficient working, correct answers may be awarded no marks

So you would need to show working for question involving equations.

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#8

(Original post by

The front of the question paper says:

*Without sufficient working, correct answers may be awarded no marks

So you would need to show working for question involving equations.

**Muttley79**)The front of the question paper says:

*Without sufficient working, correct answers may be awarded no marks

So you would need to show working for question involving equations.

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#9

**Muttley79**)

The front of the question paper says:

*Without sufficient working, correct answers may be awarded no marks

So you would need to show working for question involving equations.

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#10

(Original post by

"may" is vague as is "sufficient". It is entirely possible for someone to either spot the solution or, heaven forbid, to work it out mentally. It would be unfair if they were to penalised simply because they didn't write things down solely to appease the examiner.

**dextrous63**)"may" is vague as is "sufficient". It is entirely possible for someone to either spot the solution or, heaven forbid, to work it out mentally. It would be unfair if they were to penalised simply because they didn't write things down solely to appease the examiner.

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#11

(Original post by

You'd be foolish to ignore the rubric .... do note that Reality check is an examiner

**Muttley79**)You'd be foolish to ignore the rubric .... do note that Reality check is an examiner

Unless the question clearly stipulates that working must be shown, students should not be penalised.

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#12

(Original post by

Give unto Caesar?

Unless the question clearly stipulates that working must be shown, students should not be penalised.

**dextrous63**)Give unto Caesar?

Unless the question clearly stipulates that working must be shown, students should not be penalised.

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#13

(Original post by

The rubric [the instructions on the front of the paper] applies to every question!

**Muttley79**)The rubric [the instructions on the front of the paper] applies to every question!

What does a calculator paper (partially) test, other than whether you know how to use your calculator?

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#14

(Original post by

There is some debate around whether using a classwizz calculator to solve (eg) simultaneous or quadratic equations etc instantly should be afforded full marks . IMHO, unless the question specifically requires all working out to be shown, full marks should be awarded for providing the required solutions. After all, part of the exam being a calculator paper involves testing whether you know how to use your calculator to good effect. It isn't your fault if the examiners don't make it abundantly clear of what they expect to see for you to attain full marks. Since the classwizz calculator is a permitted piece of equipment, then it seems entirely reasonable for you to be allowed to show that you know how to use it! (Indeed, as you will soon find out as you progess through your A level, only a lunatic would waste their time using the quadratic formula to solve such relatively mundane equations when the goal is to use the results for other more cerebral purposes)

**dextrous63**)There is some debate around whether using a classwizz calculator to solve (eg) simultaneous or quadratic equations etc instantly should be afforded full marks . IMHO, unless the question specifically requires all working out to be shown, full marks should be awarded for providing the required solutions. After all, part of the exam being a calculator paper involves testing whether you know how to use your calculator to good effect. It isn't your fault if the examiners don't make it abundantly clear of what they expect to see for you to attain full marks. Since the classwizz calculator is a permitted piece of equipment, then it seems entirely reasonable for you to be allowed to show that you know how to use it! (Indeed, as you will soon find out as you progess through your A level, only a lunatic would waste their time using the quadratic formula to solve such relatively mundane equations when the goal is to use the results for other more cerebral purposes)

You're wrong.

That completely goes against the point of maths. Maths is all about structuring logical arguments, and you can't just state something, you have to convince me it is true. I'm in the second year of my degree, and I still solve quadratics by hand because: I need them symbolically, and I don't get a calculator for exams. It's not about solving the quadratic, it's about the process of getting there, and showing you can reproduce a logical line of argument.

You don't start formulating your own arguments until you start your degree, but the skills learnt at GCSE are still helpful in understanding lines of logic.

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#15

(Original post by

It remains vague. What level of detail is required to be deemed "sufficient"? "may"also implies "may not"

What does a calculator paper (partially) test, other than whether you know how to use your calculator?

**dextrous63**)It remains vague. What level of detail is required to be deemed "sufficient"? "may"also implies "may not"

What does a calculator paper (partially) test, other than whether you know how to use your calculator?

I teach Maths ... you need to show how you've solved any equation not just the answer.

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#16

(Original post by

You misunderstand what this paper is for - it's for topics that NEED a calculator like Trig where the calculations can't be done in your head or take far too long.

I teach Maths ... you need to show how you've solved any equation not just the answer.

**Muttley79**)You misunderstand what this paper is for - it's for topics that NEED a calculator like Trig where the calculations can't be done in your head or take far too long.

I teach Maths ... you need to show how you've solved any equation not just the answer.

I taught maths in schools for 25 years and now do private tuition. I spend some of my time helping students learn how to use their calculator efficiently.

Obviously, I play by the rules, and advise students to use the calculator to check their answers to equations etc rather than just write the solution.

But my argument still stands.

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#17

(Original post by

No.

You're wrong.

That completely goes against the point of maths. Maths is all about structuring logical arguments, and you can't just state something, you have to convince me it is true. I'm in the second year of my degree, and I still solve quadratics by hand because: I need them symbolically, and I don't get a calculator for exams. It's not about solving the quadratic, it's about the process of getting there, and showing you can reproduce a logical line of argument.

You don't start formulating your own arguments until you start your degree, but the skills learnt at GCSE are still helpful in understanding lines of logic.

**vicvic38**)No.

You're wrong.

That completely goes against the point of maths. Maths is all about structuring logical arguments, and you can't just state something, you have to convince me it is true. I'm in the second year of my degree, and I still solve quadratics by hand because: I need them symbolically, and I don't get a calculator for exams. It's not about solving the quadratic, it's about the process of getting there, and showing you can reproduce a logical line of argument.

You don't start formulating your own arguments until you start your degree, but the skills learnt at GCSE are still helpful in understanding lines of logic.

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#18

(Original post by

Thank you for explaining this to me. I got my maths degree in 1986.

**dextrous63**)Thank you for explaining this to me. I got my maths degree in 1986.

What are you doing on a student forum anyway, boomer?

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#19

(Original post by

You sound cynical.

What are you doing on a student forum anyway, boomer?

**vicvic38**)You sound cynical.

What are you doing on a student forum anyway, boomer?

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#20

**liamlarner**)

will edexcel examiners still give you marks for using methods that you learn at a level like logs for example if it still leads to the correct answer for example if a question says 7 to the power of n = 343 can i use logs to find it is that an acceptable method if i got the right answer out of it

**any valid method**.

I smile when I contemplate what most A-level markers would do if they came across a really bright student who had used Lagrangian or Hamiltonian mechanics to solve a problem.

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