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Department of Mechanical Engineering

UNIT ASSESSMENT FEEDBACK SHEET

UNIT NUMBER ME10304/XX10198 UNIT Dr D A S Rees


AND TITLE Mathematics 1 CONVENOR(S)

DATE January 2013 EXAM


QUESTION 1 Curve sketching: Spread of marks was very flat. The ratio of
polynomials sketch was done well, possibly because the method
is systematic. Part (c) was an odd function but many thought it
even.
QUESTION 2 Complex numbers: Generally very well-answered. Part (a)
almost always correct. Part (b) should be a one-liner using
Eulers formula, but a few took a page. Part (c) done well, again
a systematic method. Part (d) usually good but some forgot de
Moivres theorem.
QUESTION 3 Ordinary derivatives: Also generally very well answered.
QUESTION 4 Partial differentiation: First part answered well, but some
difficulty with obtaining critical points in the second part. The
number of critical points found varied from one to six! There
were five.
QUESTION 5 Integration: Integration by parts question didnt pose a
challenge, although some opted for the udv approach and took a
page when a couple of lines was all that was needed. Integration
by substitution was also fine, although often very messy. Use of
partial fractions was good.
QUESTION 6 Volumes and surfaces: Both parts of this question were drawn
from the problem sheets. Part (a) did have zero as the answer.
Part (b) was often poorly answered because an incorrect formula
for the area of the surface of revolution was quoted.
QUESTION 7 Series: The Taylor series and Binomial series parts were done
well. There seemed to be an exceptionally poor overall
understanding of the application and meaning of dAlemberts
test, although some found this part very easy. The LHpitals
rule question was also poorly answered by a sizeable minority
the detailed error features on this years problem sheet 0.
QUESTION 8 Fourier Series: Sketching was usually fine. My feeling is that
Fourier Series is perceived as being scary, when it is only the
application of a formula involving an integral. Moderate marks
overall, perhaps because this is the last topic of the semester.
QUESTION 9 Vectors: The most highly scoring question in the exam. This
question tests the standard vectorial manipulations and students
clearly know how to do these well.
Department of Mechanical Engineering

QUESTION 10 Vector geometry: Poorly received question with a very low


average. This was answered either very well (by some) or very
badly (by many). In the lectures I approached the ideas behind
such questions in a very pictorial manner, but it was clear that
this wasnt used in the question by very many at all, with
seemingly random formulae being applied. Very disappointing.
SUMMARY On the negative side, very many marks were lost because
algebraic manipulations went astray, often due to bad writing
habits. Formulae that I had earmarked and announced that
needed memorisation, such as the H-test for critical points of
surfaces or the area of surfaces of revolution, were misquoted.

On the positive side, my main aim for the paper was that should
have been of roughly the same standard as last years, but the
average was up by about 5% overall.