A level Mathematics provides a thorough grounding in the mathematical tools and techniques often needed in the workplace. It provides a foundation for further studies in a variety of subjects including Science, Engineering and Economics subjects.
The logic and reasoning skills developed by studying A level Mathematics makes sure the qualification is widely respected even in non-mathematical areas.
A good base in Mathematics is essential – preferably an A or B at GCSE level – along with an enthusiastic interest in the subject and a determination to work hard.
To progress onto A2 Mathematics, it is important that you have satisfactorily completed the AS course.
The Pure Core makes up two thirds of the AS and A level qualification and provides the techniques in algebra, geometry, trigonometry and calculus that form the fundamental building blocks of the subject.
Mathematical applications make up the remaining third of the qualification and there are various options to suit the particular needs of individual students.
The application modules fall into three strands:
Mechanics – forces, energy, motion.
Statistics – probability, data handling, testing hypotheses.
Decision – networks, algorithms, sorting.
A level Further Mathematics is designed to broaden and deepen the mathematical knowledge and skills of the mathematician. It is studied in the second year and provides a stimulating experience for those who really enjoy the subject. Topics such as matrices and complex numbers are introduced, whilst others already studied are taken to greater depth. It follows the same format as for Mathematics, but three units are from the Further Pure Core, and three are a choice from the available applications.
AS and A level Statistics are offered when required to complement the needs of other subject areas. It is particularly helpful alongside A levels in Sociology, Psychology, Biology or Geography which have a large statistical element.
|A level Mathematics is made up of six units – three at AS and three at A2. Graphics calculators are allowed in all units except Pure Core 1. Each module examination is a written paper for 1 hour and 30 minutes.
A level Further Mathematics has a similar structure, but is usually studied only in the second year.
The exam board is AQA.