An exciting week in the world of my free maths Diagnostic Questions website. Not only did we breeze past the 3,000 question and 6,000 registered users mark, but we now have two more lovely collections of questions being added to the website.
The first are from the wonderful JustMaths.
Around GCSE revision time, my students really enjoyed the JustMaths series of Tweets on GCSE exam questions. A question was tweeted out in the form of an image, and then later on, out came the answer. The accessibility on students’ mobiles and tablets meant they could do crucial bite-sized maths revision on the move. These questions were lovely as they came accompanied with detailed worked solutions.
I contacted Mel from JustMaths to ask for permission to use the questions – and more specifically, the answers – on the Diagnostic Questions website, and being the lovely person she is, she said yes! So, now we have a high quality series of exam questions on there
I had to think clearly how to best use them, as two of my golden rules of diagnostic questions are that it should take students no longer than 30 seconds to arrive at the answer, and they should not be multi-step as it makes it difficult to isolate the specific misconception the students has. This is obviously an issue with many exam questions which carry several marks.
So, after much deliberation, I have gone for the format of covering up a key piece of working, or the final answer, and challenging users to think what I have hidden. I have then thought carefully about the possibly wrong answers, as ever trying to draw out key misconceptions students might have. We don’t have anything else on the website quite like this, so hopefully it will prove useful.
Here is a flavour of the kind of thing I am talking about.
Expanding Brackets and Simplifying:
Mean from a Frequency Table:
Angles on Parallel Lines:
When we have the new functionality on the site to view students’ responses and reasons from all around the world, it will be fascinating to see how they approach these questions.
But that is not all, because I got on a bit of a roll and also contacted the lovely people at the Scottish Qualifications Authority, because I spotted an absolutely lovely set of multiple choice maths questions (called Higher Objective Tests) that they use as part of their Higher Mathematics Examination. More details can be found on the SQA website, here.
I was drawn to these questions because they cover lots of the post 16 maths content, such as differentiation, integration, functions and advanced trigonometry. This is an area of the Diagnostic Questions website that I am desperate to grow, so you can imagine my delight when the SQA said I could use their questions
Again, here is a flavour of them:
Laws of logs:
Roots of Quadratic Equations:
And you can access them all by clicking on the SQA profile on the Diagnostic Questions website here.
I hope you found those useful. And remember, if you have any questions to share yourself, please add them to the website.