Perhaps the standout surprise for me in Year 12 was how easy I found Specialist Mathematics after term 1. I believe this was a result of some excellent teaching in the preceding years, especially in Year 11 General Mathematics by Mr B Woolacott. In fact, in the middle of Year 11, I vividly recall a time a few weeks/months before my semester 1 exams when I only achieved 8/30 for a test on circle theorems in General Mathematics and thought for a little while about whether Specialist Mathematics would be too difficult for me (and whether I should take Further Mathematics instead).
My resolve to take Specialist Mathematics in the end was one of the best confidence-boosting decisions I have ever made. In fact, not only did I take Specialist Mathematics, I also took Extension Mathematics with the University of Melbourne. Though I did give a mediocre performance in my first ‘school assessed coursework’ (test) that I did in Specialist Mathematics at the end of term 1, after that I found the subject to be relatively easy.
All in all, I would attribute the relative ease with which I found Specialist Mathematics to two main factors:
1. The hard work I did in the years prior, especially Year 11.
2. The difficulty of Extension Mathematics relative to Specialist Mathematics.