Mathematics A Level
A Level Mathematics builds on your existing mathematical skills gained at GCSE. You will study pure mathematics, using both computer software and scientific calculators to aid learning when appropriate. To broaden your mathematical experience, you will also study some applied mathematics in the form of statistics and mechanics. Good algebraic skills are recommended.
For the Pure Mathematics part of the course, you will study topics covering algebra; co-ordinate geometry; sequences and series; calculus; exponentials and logarithms together with trigonometry. The statistics part of the applied mathematics part of the course will involve dealing with a large set of data, making use of both scientific calculators and mathematical software. You will be expected to perform statistical tests and calculations, also dealing with different statistical distributions. The mechanics part of the applied course will involve looking at Newton’s laws of motion and their application in a mathematical context. You will be expected to deal with problems involving forces and the motion of bodies and particles under different circumstances. The work will be split between dynamics (the study of moving bodies) and statics (the study of bodies in equilibrium).
The skills gained in the first year are used and built upon, by extending the depth of the topics studied; for example, the topic of calculus is studied to a far greater extent and its applications in both pure and applied mathematics is explored, similarly, the topics studied in applied mathematics are covered in more depth and to a far greater extent.
In year one you will take two papers; one will be a two hour paper on pure mathematics, and the other a one hour paper on applied mathematics.
In year two you will take three papers in total, two of these will be two hour papers on pure mathematics, and the last a two hour paper on applied mathematics.
The final A Level grade is based entirely on the second year exam papers which test knowledge gained over the whole two year course.
To be accepted onto a Level 3 programme, you must hold at least five GCSEs at grade 4 or above, including GCSE Maths and English language.
It is essential that you achieve a minimum of a grade 6 in Maths and a grade 5 in English Language.
Mathematics is a prized qualification for university, and for life. It highlights your natural problem-solving ability and logical ordered thinking – both excellent skills to have for many degree courses. You can progress to a degree course in a mathematics discipline, and A Level Mathematics is an essential qualification to study Physics or Engineering at university. Universities will accept Mathematics for a wide variety of degree courses, not only science-based courses.
Facilities and resources
Some topics on the course will be taught using the mathematical program ‘Autograph’ – a very powerful and sophisticated graphing tool. Access to laptop computers will also enable you to make use of Autograph in some areas of the syllabus.
An extended virtual learning environment will ensure that learners will have access to schemes of work, lesson notes, homework and homework solutions together with useful links to the exam board website.
Q: Do I need a calculator?
A: We recommend a Casio fx-991EX or similar as you will need to use it to help with statistical analysis.
Q: Can I do A Level Further Maths without doing A Level Mathematics?
A: You have to be taking an A Level course in Mathematics alongside any Further Mathematics qualification.
Q: Can I pick up Further Mathematics in my second year of study?
A: Providing it fits into their timetable, students who wish to go on to study Maths, Physics or Engineering at University may find it helpful to study some of the Further Maths content in the second year.
Every full-time student at Petroc will have their own Study Programme which will include:
– Your academic or vocational qualification.
– Maths and English Language development – if you have not achieved GCSE grade 4 in either of these subjects.
– Work Experience – hours will vary depending on your qualification and course level.
– Tutor Support – to support your personal, academic and professional development.
– Sustainability – helping you to identify how you can improve the sustainability of your future employment sectors.
– Personal Development Awards – developing six key areas of personal and employability behaviours to prepare you for the working world.
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Why Petroc should be your first choice
Petroc offers high quality education and training across North and Mid Devon. We provide outstanding learning, excellent facilities, strong connections to employers and a supportive environment to help you fulfil your education goals and set you on your path to the career of your dreams.
We offer a supportive and inclusive environment where you can flourish and feel a valued member of the college and wider community.
Our teaching spaces and facilities are some of the best in the region, providing stimulating and true-to-life learning environments.
We’ll provide you with the experiences you need to be ready for employment or the next step on your educational journey.