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Math B Exam
Posted:
Jun 21, 2008 12:15 PM


In reading the comments about the exam I think many may agree with my primary observation and criticism of the test. The test does not grant enough credits for many of the questions.
This is a recurring problem since the state went to 88 points, I guess they don't think anyone will realize that 52% (43%for math A) is passing instead of 65%. If direct and fair questions were asked such camouflage would be unnecessary.
For example #25 a 2 point question required that students find the other base angle, the vertex angle, and use the area formula (provided). I think this question is fair. However some students found the base with the law of sines and then used the area formula. Others dropped an altitude, found the base and height by right triangle trig methods and used the plane geometry area of a triangle formula. Not the right approach but good math just the same. When they were 2 tenths off the correct area they were awarded 1 point loosing half the credit for a rounding error. There is nothing wrong with the question, just not enough credit for some student responses.
Questions 33, using the solution in the rubric, 34 poorly worded as well, 29 (best example), are all better examples of not enough points for the work required. For the student who does the problem in the easiest and most direct method the test is fine. But for the average 11th grade math student who sometimes took the long way around there are not enough points to give a fair and accurate grading to their work.
Thank you for allowing me a place to have my say. The state requests but as far as I have experienced does not listen to nor act on comments.
Fred Salvo St. Francis Prep.
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