Further Mathematics

A Level

Course Entry Requirements

Three A* – C grades in GCSE, plus a grade 5/C in GCSE English Language, plus a grade 6/B in GCSE Mathematics (but a grade 7/8 is preferred).

If you are interested in joining the College we will arrange a meeting with an experienced subject counsellor who will help you to choose courses that best suit your ambitions and achievements.

All entry requirement details are correct at the time of publication, September 2018, however, the College may need to make some changes by September 2019 in the light of student demand, staff availability and external factors beyond the College’s control.

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What will I study?

Over the two years, you will study a variety of topics, from three areas in mathematics:

Area 1. Further Pure Mathematics (eg Proof, Complex Numbers, Matrices, Further Algebra and Functions, Further Calculus, Hyperbolic Functions, Differential Equations, Trigonometry)

Area 2 and Area 3. Depending on student demand, staff availability and other factors, these will be chosen by the College from the following three applications:

Mechanics (eg Dimensional Analysis, Momentum and Collisions, Work, Energy and Power, Circular Motion)

Statistics (eg Discrete Random Variables, Poisson Distribution, Type I and II Errors, Chi Tests)Discrete (eg Graphs, Networks, Flows, Linear Programming, Critical Path Analysis, Game Theory)

What skills do I need?

  • Good time management – punctuality to lessons is important and also getting into good routines of doing homework so that it is handed in on time.
  • Determination and persistence – there will be times when you are likely to find it difficult and it might take more time than you’re used to for a full understanding.
  • Initiative – if you’re stuck, come and find someone in the Maths department for some help.  We’re always happy to!

Examining Board

We use the AQA board for Further Maths.

Why should I study this course?

Further Maths is becoming more and more popular.  This is because universities are including it more and more in the ‘must have done’ requirements for certain courses.  If you are already thinking about doing a degree either in Maths, or in a subject where there will be a high mathematical content (such as Engineering, some Science degrees, etc) then you should be thinking about including Further Mathematics amongst your course choices.

The Further Maths course is structured, organised and taught in a very similar way to the Maths course at Wilberforce.

How is the course assessed?

At the end of the course, there are three written papers, each two hours long. Each paper counts for one-third of the A-level, and assesses the following:

Paper 1 – topics in Area 1 Further Pure Mathematics
Paper 2 – topics in Area 1 Further Pure Mathematics
Paper 3 – topics from Area 2 and Area 3 described in the section above

What will this course prepare me for?

This course is perfect preparation for progression to university to study any degree with a high mathematical content.  Universities and employers love students who have done Maths because of its focus on problem-solving: if you have done Further Maths as well, then it makes you stand out as someone who is prepared to challenge themselves that bit more!

Private Study

As with other A Level courses, the expectation with Further Maths is that you do 3-4 hours each week of private study.  We use weekly homework sheets that are really useful: you can easily check that you are up to date and also check how well you are progressing on the course.

And remember, if you get stuck, there are always Maths teachers around who will be really happy to help you!

What materials will I need to provide?

You will require the basic standard stationery items: a pen, pencil, ruler, paper and a folder to file your work. You might have your own scientific calculator that you may want to use, but we are happy to provide them at College if you haven’t. We will teach you how to use a graphical calculator (Casio FX9750 G II) which you may wish to purchase.

How will I be taught?

You will have 5 hours of Further Maths on your timetable.  The lessons have a lot of creative ideas in them and there is a really good mixture of individual work, paired work and group work.

The students themselves tell us that they really enjoy the lessons: they say that the lessons are interesting and useful and that the teaching helps them make really good progress.  They also say that the Maths staff are also really supportive by putting on extra revision sessions and twice weekly workshops.

A Level Further Maths is for you if:

…you want to push your Mathematical ability to the best it can be!  You should definitely take it if you are already thinking about doing a degree in Maths.  Another reason to take it is that it helps you stand out from other students who are applying to the same courses as you at university.

A Level Further Mathematics is not for you if:

…you are not prepared to persist, if you reach a point where you find the course difficult.