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Help on Math HL Tutoring

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i don't know about the UK, but most definitely it's legal.

If you feel that you are mathematically advanced and capable of taking the Math HL curriculum then go for it.

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Yes it's legal. Nobody can stop you.

Get the Pearson baccalaureate HL Math textbook and start covering the syllabus. This book is not the perfect book for the course but it is the best out there for the HL Math course. I think everybody that has used multiple textbooks and has solved past papers will agree with me on this one. It follows the syllabus perfectly, each time you learn a new skill it tests you with exercises and it ends each chapter with IB style questions. These questions are exactly like the ones on the real exams and sometimes they are even a little harder( IB style questions on steroids). If you get it with the e-book you will also have worked solutions for all the questions in the book. If you have this I don't think that you will need a private tutor but everybody is different.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Pearson-Baccalaureate-Mathematics-Diploma-International/dp/0435074962

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Mathematics-IB-Diploma-Higher-CD-ROM/dp/1107661730/ref=dp_ob_title_bk

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Mathematics-International-Students-Dipolma-Core/dp/1876543116/ref=dp_ob_title_bk

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Mathematics-Higher-Level-Course-Book/dp/0198390122/ref=sr_1_6?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1383674689&sr=1-6&keywords=Math+hl+ib+diploma

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Mathematics-International-Student-Diploma-Preparation/dp/1921500123/ref=sr_1_9?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1383674689&sr=1-9&keywords=Math+hl+ib+diploma

http://www.ibid.com.au/cat/mathematics

People usually use one of these textbooks. Obviously my vote goes to the Pearson one.

Edited by rinik
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Obviously that it is legal (unless the IB has secret spies which will sue you down for that). Get that tutor, learn as much as mathematics as you can and do your best in the course. Try to learn to do stuff without calculators, be rigorous with proofs (always!) and never take anything for granted. For books you can take the IB Pearson Bacc HL book, the Oxford Math HL (not so sure on how this one is) and if you want something else, try buying Stewart's Calculus (if you want a nice calculus course which will cover you for the Calculus option in Math HL).

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Wow, that's a lot of you've finished for someone still in G10! Content-wise I think you would be fine, you don't need to have studied the entire syllabus before even starting the course (heck, I didn't do any calculus before G11, yet going over content wasn't really an issue for me).

It may be worth noting however, that the book you have is probably following an older syllabus - matrices is no longer covered in HL Maths. There isn't much of a difference from what I've gathered, though here's a complete list of the changes.

Also, while I haven't used the H&H book myself, I have heard from others that the questions tend to be simpler compared to the actual exam-style questions. Since that's what tends to be the harder part of HL Maths, it may help to try and get a few past-paper questions, or a different textbook to give it a try. It's not at all necessary since you are still in G10, but it's worth considering if you want to give yourself even more of a head start.

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I am using the "Mathematics for the International Student: Mathematics HL - International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme" (http://www.amazon.co.uk/Mathematics-International-Student-Baccalaureate-Programme/dp/1876543094). (not exactly this one, just an older or newer edition. it has a different colour cover, but I guess that they are pretty similar).

I am aware that this is the 'core' only, but to be honest, I dont really care as I am only in grade 10 (and therefore still have loads of time for the other chapters). I have (completely) studied about 7 chapters (Logs, Functions, Probability, Introduction to Calculus, 3/4 of Matrices chapter, Quadratic Equations, Counting and binomial theorem) and started with the Complex numbers and Polynomials chapter.

Some stuff was just pure revision for me (always the beginning of each chapter), but until now, everything is working out great.

Btw, I dont have a tutor (I just teach myself) and I believe that it is working out until now.

Any advice (eg. which chapters are really important in the IB Math HL course) is appreciated. Thanks, dvirchow

I would advise you to master trigonometry, and start reviewing easy examples of the chain rule because they will be useful later on (learn the notation and apply it whenever you can). Do the same for complex numbers (more-so if you are interested in Physics or Engineering). Try to do some light problems in your head (completely in your head, no calculators or anything) as it will make you think faster and use your "instincts" a little bit more. Good luck my friend.

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Focus on HL problems. Don't limit yourself to only one textbook. Do past papers, because, trust me, 90% of the exercises you encounter in the book you've got now are nothing compared to those you'll receive on the exams.

Try to understand the concepts. What is behind the theory? How did the theory emerge? Why is formula X looking like it is looking? Don't just apply the formulas. Understand how they were derived.

Good luck! :)

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I think you're on a good early start and you'll have plenty of time to master difficult problems and thereby achieve a great result when your exams finally begin.

Understanding concepts in grade 10 would be enough, I think, yes. In most exercises, you'd need to know what the concepts mean in order to solve an exercise. Some problems wont even specify what method you have to use in order to solve them. This is where understanding what differentiation or integration mean will help you.

Also, just because you've completed the basics of a chapter doesn't mean you should stop studying those questions. There will constantly come up things that you cannot solve, or exercises that need a different, particular approach. Pay attention to those, note them down and see where you could use them again.

Don't worry about it, is all I'm saying. Be consistent in your work, try to do at least 1 hour of exercises per day and you should be fine. :)


Oh, I think the IB exam questions will be much more difficult than most you've encountered in a book.

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I wouldn't really recommend working out of an SL book, to be honest. The content itself isn't that different (with the exception of a few topics+ options) but the style of the questions is. Overall, it wouldn't be that different compared to staying with the H&H book, if not simpler.

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Do you honestly think so? I just feel a little more secure with a newer book than with an "old" H&H book from 2006 or so...

Well, both books don't follow the syllabus too closely anyways. As a HL book the H&H one would likely have more advanced questions, so it'll probably be better in that sense.

Besides, it's not like there's a massive difference with the new syllabus. There is certain topics like matrices and differential equations which aren't in the core syllabus, but I don't think it'll make much of a difference at this stage.

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Do you honestly think so? I just feel a little more secure with a newer book than with an "old" H&H book from 2006 or so...

Well, both books don't follow the syllabus too closely anyways. As a HL book the H&H one would likely have more advanced questions, so it'll probably be better in that sense.

Besides, it's not like there's a massive difference with the new syllabus. There is certain topics like matrices and differential equations which aren't in the core syllabus, but I don't think it'll make much of a difference at this stage.

Not true. I wouldn't recommend getting the H&H one, even the examples posted there are too basic and are more tedious than anything else (not really challenging to be honest). As well, do not get a SL book if you are planning to go into HL (for obvious reasons, unless you have tons of money to spare).

If you really want a more in depth experience, try buying a college level calculus textbook or precalculus textbook (even though most calculus textbooks include a preliminary section of precalculus, which should prove to be useful). Matrices is still an absolutely NECESSARY component to master before getting out of the IB: I can't stress enough their importance in linear algebra, which you will see in university.

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Since you have the two books, you might as well look through them both really. It's really up to you, it's not like this degree of preparation is by any means necessary. I would advise getting a better HL textbook at some point (which could be when you start the IBDP), but otherwise it looks like you are sorted for HL Maths).

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1) Well, text book questions aren't as difficult as Pastpaper questions, but they can give you an idea of what questions look like. Thats why Solving pastpapers are an essential part of getting a decent grade.

2) Yes, you will develop a feel for the questions, and they can become very good and even be able to get the idea of questions by simply looking at them. And no, it's not your text book. All text books are quite similar in their level of difficulty. (Except for the IBID textbook, that one is amazing)

3) Wil teacher in IB teach you how to approach questions? Depends on teacher and his/her plan. Mine didn't, So i have no clue.

4) RELAX! You still haven't started the IBDP, you shouldn't be so worried about all of this! You are doing something great by familiarizing yourself with the IB math syllabus, and you WILL get better in the two years of doing Mathematics HL. :D

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The Cambridge one has some awesome problems and even harder ones than those you will see on the HL exam but still very similar to the style of questioning.

Pearson one is basically a collection of past papers. At the end of every chapters there are practice questions which are extracted form past exams and some them are even harder that their respective originals.

IBID has harder questions but the above two come closer to the questioning style in the IB exam.

I can't comment on the Oxford one since I don't have it

The Hesse and Harris one sucks in my opinion.

If you ask me, yes, one of the reasons you do so poorly on the real exams is because of the textbook( mostly because you are not familiar with the questions). However it is not the main reason and if you keep doing past papers this will stop. You will get better with time.

The other reasons is because you don't know the material as well as you think.This is due to two factors. The textbook doesn't have that info( no Ib math hl textbook is compete in my opinion) or you didn't understand everything. But this is where past papers come into the picture. You can learn what you don't know by doing them. The downside of this is that you don't have anything to test yourself on later.

In short keep doing past papers. If you don't know something you will learn it when you get stuck on a question and you will get faster and better the more you practice. That feeling of uncertainty will go away. As Fiz said you will develop something like a sixth sense for the questions and you will know instantly what needs to be done just by looking at them. If you practice of course. Trust me on this. Plus if you get to this level you will probably end up with an extra 30-45 min in the actual exam for review. Of course you have to be able to solve everything for this but even if you can't, you will have extra time to solve the questions that are giving you the most trouble.

Examples:

Vector questions in section B are usually straight forward and can be done in half the time

Some trig identities can be done in less than a min but you are given 3-5 min for them

Sketching functions,derivatives,finding zeroes,max,min, differentiating etc. can be solved in under 2 min but you are usually given 3-7 min for them

finding roots of complex numbers or proving something about complex numbers form given results requires less time than the time provided.

Induction and sequences questions are usually straight forward and can also get you around 3 extra minutes

There are other examples but the main point is to practice so you can get some extra time for the hardest questions.

My math teacher didn't tell me how to tackle exam questions. He also skipped a decent amount of the syllabus. However he did supply us with a decent amount of past paper questions.

Hope this helps

If you practice during the summer Math HL will be very easy especially if you studied every topic and review the material with your class during the two years. Of course doing past papers in the process. Also solve math problems every day.

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Also, another thing: When I do past papers, i usually do really bad and get barely anything right (obviously the things i haven't studied yet and maybe also because i am not too concentrated when i do them), but i feel kind of unsure right now. i think that the textbook is so easy in comparison with the math hl past papers, so i am not well "prepared" for the past papers.

Will this feeling for the past papers come after a while? Is my easy textbook a main factor?

I really need some feedback here please!

Edit: Will your teachers in IB Math HL classes try to teach you how to approach the questions?

Textbook will be part of it - the questions in exams aren't usually the same as in textbooks, particularly moreso if you have an easier textbook. But you'll get the hang of it by the end of the course and they won't seem so bad. I used Cambridge's new HL book and went from a 3 in my final exams last May to a 6 in my retakes 6 months later in November after reteaching myself the whole course - the book has some tough questions at the end which helped a great deal because some were actualy harder than the exams. The trick is to doing a lot of past papers, which you have plenty of time for!

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