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Hi, I would like to ask about the need to annotate on the Maths working. Any idea if need how much is needed to annotate? Thank you.


Dear ettk75,

I am not sure either. But think on trigonometry angles type of question, you have to state the theorems to support your working, like sum of interior angles of triangle is 180 degrees. For ratio type of questions, think as long as you show your working clearly is enough. Pls add on or point out my mistakes on this, I am interested to know more on this topic also, as it is not very clearly stated in syllabus. 

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Hi Waterflow,

Thank you for your response.

I agreed it is not clear in the syllabus. However, I just happen to search this online from the website –, and it seems to have provided some insights.

Structured/Long-answer questions

• For each question, a student has to show his or her method of solution

(working steps) clearly and write his or her answer(s) in the space(s)

provided. Students should not leave any questions blank as marks are

awarded for workings.

• Students should manage their time wisely – not more than 1.5 min for

every mark.

• Students are encouraged to apply the following useful exam skills when

tackling each question:

1. Underline key information and units.

2. Add short statements or labels to the steps as it will help in the

checking process.

3. Gauge the number of steps required to solve the questions by

looking at the marks allocated.

Also, this seems to have clarified further towards this query:

When presenting their answers, candidates are not required to include a final answer statement in their solution. However, writing statements is a good practice in mathematical problem-solving as it helps to clarify the candidates’ working.

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Dear ettk75,

In reference to what learning lab had stated, the short statements or labels included are for checking purpose rather than points would be deducted if not included. Also the methods used as long as mathematically correct would be accepted and thus it is important to present your answer with the right logical flow. Also I would prefer not to write too many annotations as time management is a tough job under examination context especially if the student’s condition not optimum during examination and may become panick if he or she can’t do some of the questions. My thinking is to finish the exam first without writing too many annotations, and if time allowed, then add on later during checking. The first attempt must be getting logical solutions with clear steps without wasting time on annotation. 

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Hi waterflow,

Thank you for your prompt response again.

I agreed with the time management concern. However, I wonder if still need to add at least a short annotation to the workings because my son’s maths work apparently is not clear enough to me or self-explanatory. 

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Thanks for the answer.

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