maths question paper 2

Department of Basic Education Minister, Angie Motshekga. Image via: Flickr

‘Unsolvable’ Maths Paper 2 question excluded from marking process

A number of learners and teachers had complained that there was no right way of answering Question 5.1 in Maths Paper 2 exam.

maths question paper 2

Department of Basic Education Minister, Angie Motshekga. Image via: Flickr

The Department of Basic Education has confirmed that the problematic question on the Grade 12 Maths Paper 2 will be excluded from the marking process. 

Earlier in November, the department said it was reviewing Question 5.1 which was out of seven marks after a number of learners and educators complained that it didn’t make any logical sense. 


On Sunday, 4 December, the Department of Basic Education said that the question was found to be faulty and will be excluded from the marking process. Furthermore, the question paper will be marked out of 143 and the mark will be upscaled to 150.

Following complaints that flooded, spokesperson, Elijah Mhlanga confirmed that they would investigate the matter.

“There are concerns that have been raised by different people… We have recorded it for thorough investigation and until such time relevant committees have sat down to study the question paper and make a declaration of an error, I am not in a position to say that.” 

Elijah Mhlanga
maths question paper 2
DBE has confirmed that matric pupils will get an opportunity to write the exams they have missed. Image: Twitter/@DBE_SA

On 13 November, Umalusi, the Council for Quality Assurance in General and Further Education and Training said it was concerned about the question. 

It further said in this regard, the standard procedure for dealing with such issues is the marking guidelines or memoranda standardisation meetings during which problematic questions are moderated in consideration of candidates’ answers.

“Depending on the magnitude of the problem, the marks allocated to the question/s may be excluded from the question paper’s total marks or that alternative responses may be accepted,” the Council said. 

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