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Unit 1 and 2 include the following areas of study: Algebra and Structure; Arithmetic and Number; Discrete Mathematics; Geometry, Measurement and Trigonometry; Graphs of Linear and Non-Linear Relations and Statistics. Each unit includes four or more topics selected from at least three different areas of study and must include two units from number systems and recursion; vectors in the plane; geometry in the plane and proof; and graphs of non-linear relations. Students should be able to apply techniques, routines and processes involving arithmetic, sets, lists and tables, diagrams and geometric constructions, algebraic manipulation, equations and graph with and without the use of technology. 

For more information on the Specialist Mathematics course, visit the VCAA website.

VIC: Specialist Mathematics Yr11 Classroom ActivitiesDownload
Graphs of Linear and non Linear Relationships

Parametric Equations

What is the difference between a parameter and a variable? This activity introduces the notion of a parameter through two pairs of parametric equations that result in the same Cartesian equation, highlighting the additional information provided by the parameter. Variable isolation and animation support visual and conceptual development models for understanding the mathematics concepts in this activity.

Advanced String Graphs Part 1

The famous designs of Santiago Calatrava represent beautiful examples of the synergy between mathematics, engineering and architecture. In this activity students model the cables of the “Bridge of Stings” in Jerusalem using a family of straight lines. The envelope formed by these straight lines can also be modelled by a single equation defining the curve. Students determine equations to straight lines, solve simultaneous equations, generate parametric equations and finally a single equation to model the resulting curve.
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Advanced String Graphs Part 2

This is an extension of String Graphs Part 1 but can be done independently. In this activity students stitch points on the lines y = x and y = -x. The family of straight lines form an envelope which can be modelled by finding successive points of intersection. The points of intersection can be modelled by a parabola. A range of extension questions are provided including generalising the parabola for stitching points on the lines y = mx and y = -mx.
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Advanced String Graphs Part 3

This activity brings together a range of ideas from Activity 1 and 2 using a combination of rotation and dilation matrices and a very powerful visual and algebraic approach. The activity gives function to the use of matrices and highlights how relatively complicated expressions can be determined very easily. Students connect many aspects of the Specialist Mathematics course in a single activity that is sure to engage students.