Mathematics

Mathematics is the tool we use to fully understand the world around us. From the movement of a football through the air, to the trends in financial markets, we use mathematics to:

    • Explain what is happening
    • Model a situation
    • Predict what may happen in the future
    • Communicate with others
    • Generalise to other scenarios

Consequently students with advanced mathematical skills are in very high demand for careers including Engineering, Science, Design, Medicine, Finance, Business, Accounting, Management, Computing, Law and Social Science.

So if you want to know the fundamental language of the universe and give yourself a boost in your future career, then studying A Level Mathematics is for you.

 

What will you gain from studying Mathematics?

Mathematics is often, incorrectly, seen as purely the means to get an answer to a sum, or a procedure to follow. In fact, Mathematics is much richer than that. As Dean Schlicter said, “Go down deep enough into anything and you will find mathematics.”

Mathematics involves many disciplines including:

    • spotting patterns
    • making connections
    • understanding how things change
    • communicating with graphs and algebra
    • statistical modelling
    • logical thinking

Most importantly you will develop highly transferable skills in how to solve problems and how to think logically. Alongside, this you will gain deep reasoning skills, resilience, the ability to be reflective in your own practice, the ability to communicate complex ideas and how to work under your own initiative.

 

A Level Mathematics

The A Level exam board we use is AQA, and all content will be examined as a linear exam at the end of year 13.

The government is consulting on changes to the A Level curriculum and details are yet to be published, but will include areas of study such as:

    • Algebra and functions
    • Coordinate geometry
    • Sequences and series
    • Trigonometry
    • Exponentials and logarithms
    • Calculus
    • Numerical modelling
    • Vectors
    • Statistical analysis and data presentation
    • Hypothesis testing
    • Probability
    • Forces
    • Kinematics
    • Moments

 

What can I do to prepare for A Level study?

Here are some items to read, watch and investigate before you start your A Level in Mathematics. There is a massive amount of content on the web, so you will need to be selective.

Specific to A Level Mathematics

http://www.cimt.plymouth.ac.uk/projects/mepres/step-up/
Based at Plymouth University, a primer to work through before you start your AS level. You need to select 5 or 6 areas on which to work.

http://www.mei.org.uk/bridging_tests
A selection of online tests, which you can complete to see whether you are “A Level ready”.

http://www.m4ths.com/gcse-to-a-level-bridge.html
A collection of videos about different topics building on your GSCE knowledge. Pick 5 or 6 different ones on topics in which you think you may need to gain confidence.

General mathematical interest, and helping you to “think mathematically”.

http://www.numberphile.com/
Numberphile is a collection of fun, short videos about different numbers.

https://plus.maths.org/content/
An online maths magazine from Cambridge University.

http://nrich.maths.org/frontpage
A massive collection of problems and puzzles, helping you to “think mathematically”.

 

Books to read

Why Do Buses Come In Threes
Buy this Book

Alex’s Adventures in Numberland
Buy this Book

1089 And All That
Buy this Book

"The universe cannot be read until we have learned the language and become familiar with the characters in which it is written. It is written in mathematical language…"

– Galileo Galilei