Mathematics (A Level)


Why should I study A Level Mathematics? 

Mathematics is one of the most popular subjects studied at A Level and enables you to develop your understanding of topics already seen at GCSE, at the same time as introducing you to new areas. Mathematics A Level is highly relevant as preparation for a number of degree courses and employment areas. It supports many other subjects at A Level including Physics, Biology and Chemistry. It is also useful for Geography, Psychology and Economics. Higher level mathematics qualifications are very well recognised by employers and universities and there is evidence to suggest that having a higher level mathematics qualification may boost your future earning potential. 

Our department is a large department staffed by highly qualified and experienced teachers. 

We have very good links with a number of universities and offer a programme of additional lectures from visiting speakers in the summer term. We have particularly good links with the Mathematics Department at the University of Essex. The department sets regular Mathematics Challenge questions with prizes available and all students have the opportunity to take part in both the individual and team Senior Mathematics Challenge events. Past students have been successful in achieving gold certificates and some have progressed onto the next level of the Mathematics Olympiad. 

The Mathematics department runs a targeted programme of support sessions to help students make the transition from GCSE to A Level study. There are also drop-in support sessions through the year and a programme of revision sessions to help students prepare for the final exams. We run an additional class to support students intending to apply to top universities where specialised entrance exams may apply. 

We recommend that students who aim to study Mathematics or a related degree course consider studying AS Further Mathematics alongside A Level Mathematics.


Course Content

During the course you will study three types of mathematics: 

Pure Mathematics – these are mathematical techniques from areas such as algebra, trigonometry and calculus. You will learn how to prove and apply a range of problem-solving techniques.

Statistics – you will develop further skills in analysing and representing data, including using technology to analyse a large data set. You will extend your understanding of probability and learn how to carry out hypothesis tests. This area of mathematics provides useful support for other A Level subjects that include data analysis. 

Mechanics – you will learn how to solve problems involving objects moving with constant acceleration, including motion under gravity. You will learn how to apply Newton’s Laws of Motion and develop an understanding of Forces and Moments. This branch of mathematics is highly relevant for students also studying Physics. 

Assessment

Students’ progress will be tracked through regular topic tests throughout the course and a formal end of Year 1 exam. The A Level Mathematics assessment is three exams of 2 hours duration each at the end of the two year course.

Progression onto Year 2

Progression to the second year of this A Level course will be dependent on having made satisfactory progress in the first year of the course, including achieving at least an E grade in a formal late spring assessment, as well as the maintenance of a good level of attendance and commitment throughout the year.


Minimum Entry Criteria

Standard College entry requirements (as detailed on page 12 of the Prospectus) and a minimum of: 

Grade 7                  

GCSE Mathematics

 





What can I do after studying A Level Mathematics?

There is a national shortage of people with mathematical skills and A Level Mathematics will equip you with the necessary skills to cope with numerous jobs and higher education courses. Mathematical skills and qualifications are useful in career areas including scientific, technical, financial and managerial roles as well as in education and the civil service. In addition, many subjects in higher education involve Mathematics as an essential part of the course, particularly in the sciences, finance and economics but also in courses such as geography, sports science and psychology. 

Further Information

Students will need to have access to a scientific calculator or graphical calculator. The calculator must have an ANS key and the ability to compute summary statistics and access probabilities from the binomial distribution. Further information on calculators can be found via the JCQ website www.jcq.org.uk and you will be given further advice at Induction and Enrolment. 

Textbooks and e-resources will be available for the A Level course and further details will also be provided at Induction and Enrolment.

Extension lessons are also offered to those who wish to attempt university entrance papers (see 4th Academic Subject section).

Below are helpful links for transitioning from GCSE to A Level Mathematics:

https://amsp.org.uk/resource/gcse-alevel-transition-resources

 https://alevelmathsrevision.com/bridging-the-gap/