As well as being an intellectually stimulating subject in its own right, A-Level Mathematics equips students with the necessary skills (problem solving, logic and clear thinking) to support many other subjects, including Sciences, Economics, Geography, Computer Science to name but a few.
All the content for A-Level Mathematics is compulsory and is the same for all examining boards.
Students will follow the set course and take three terminal examinations.
Two of these examinations will be on Pure Mathematics which makes up approximately 66% of the course. The third examination will be on both Statistics and Mechanics which makes up the final 34%.
Some topics already studied at Higher GCSE level such as Trigonometry, various algebraic topics and coordinate Geometry are revisited. Students are then introduced to new topics such as differential and integral calculus, as well as arithmetic and geometric series. This work will provide the platform for all year 12 and future year 13 study in this subject.
Statistics is by far the most used area of Mathematics covered, in terms of being applicable to other subjects as well as a whole range of first year degree courses including Business and Economics, financially based courses as well as engineering, medical and biologically based sciences. The work covered includes dealing with data including summarising and representation of data. Probability ideas are extended and formalised, in a more complex manner, from GCSE level. Newer ideas are also encountered including more formal ideas of correlation and regression. ‘Normal distribution’ is studied, and also basic hypothesis testing. There will be an emphasis on using real data sets and building an awareness of how to analyse such data sets using appropriate technology. There is an expectation that students will possess a graphical calculator or one that can access statistical tables and perform iterative processes.
In Mechanics, Newton’s Laws of motion are explored in a variety of contexts. The use of Forces in ‘balanced’ problems are investigated as well as various types of motion under different conditions. Vectors, introduced previously at GCSE Higher level, are developed and applied across topic areas. Many algebraic skills developed in the Higher course at GCSE and in the Pure Mathematics courses are needed here.
In the new A-Level Mathematics syllabus, there is more of a problem solving approach to the content, and students will work to develop these skills allowing them think about how to deal with challenging problems devising strategies that allow for this.
Students should have achieved a minimum of a Level 7 in GCSE Mathematics.
All applications to Gravesend Grammar School Sixth Form must be made directly via our website. Our sixth form information evening is on Wednesday 13th January at 7pm, applications open on Thursday 14th January.