# Mathematics, Statistics and Further Maths A Level at Prior Pursglove And Stockton Sixth Form College

## Course description

This course builds on GCSE level mathematics emphasising how mathematical ideas are interconnected and can be applied to help make sense of data, to understand the physical world, and to solve problems in a variety of contexts. It prepares students for further study and employment in a wide range of disciplines involving the use of mathematics/statistics.

At advanced level there are four broad areas (depending on the course chosen)

• Pure Maths – is the foundation of all Maths courses and includes topics such as algebra, trigonometry and calculus
• Mechanics – is the mathematics of force and motion as applied to objects or systems and includes topics such as constant acceleration, Newton’s laws, projectiles and momentum.
• Statistics – involves the extension of ideas of data handling and probability, with a view to being able to draw conclusions or answer questions like ‘Does drug X reduce heart attacks?’
• Discrete – involves the use of algorithms to solve practical problems like ‘the travelling salesperson problem’ (how to visit several towns and return home by the shortest route); this has applications to decision making in industry, business and computing.

WHY SHOULD I STUDY MATHEMATICS OR STATISTICS?

Mathematics / Statistics is a useful if not essential tool in many areas of study, particularly science and can be stimulating and challenging in its own right.

Mathematics and Statistics A levels are highly regarded by employers, universities and colleges for a wide range of courses and careers.

USEFUL SKILLS & INTERESTS

For Mathematics/ Further mathematics you should be comfortable when handling algebra as it is a vital part of the courses.

Statistics requires less algebra but you should be comfortable handling numbers, using calculators and solving problems involving data.

## Course content

Mathematics

Pure Mathematics

You will be extending your knowledge and skills in topics such as algebra and trigonometry, as well as learning some brand new ideas such as calculus. Although many of the ideas are interesting in their own right, they also serve as an important foundation for the other branches of Mathematics.

Mechanics

Mechanics is essentially the mathematics of force and motion. You will learn the technique of mathematical modeling – turning a complicated physical problem into a simpler one that can be analysed and solved using mathematical methods. Many of the ideas you will meet will form an introduction to such modern fields as cybernetics, robotics, biomechanics and sports science, as well as the more traditional ideas of engineering and physics.

Statistics

Statistics involves the extension of ideas of data handling and probability involved in GCSE Mathematics with a view to being able to draw conclusions or answers to questions such as ‘Does drug X reduce heart attacks?’ Many of the ideas encountered have applications in a wide variety of fields such as risk analysis or quality assurance on a production line

Further Mathematics

In addition to A level Mathematics, more pure mathematics is studied, plus a further two areas chosen from mechanics, statistics and discrete (Discrete mathematics involves the use of algorithms to solve a wide range of practical problems such as the scheduling of complex projects, transport planning and the routing of telecommunication messages).

There is the option to study Further Mathematics as an AS level or the full A level; both options are available in the second year of your studies and are assessed through examinations.

Statistics

A level Statistics builds upon the statistics and probability components of GCSE Mathematics and employs the statistical enquiry cycle to help make sense of data trends and to solve statistical problems from a variety of areas, such as psychology, biology, geography, business and social sciences.

It prepares students for further study and employment in a wide range of disciplines which use statistical analysis and reasoning with data and is all assessed through examinations.

Studying Statistics will give you the opportunity to develop an understanding of how the subject content is applied in decision making processes used in the world around you by using realistic data taken from authentic contexts in your studies.

## Entry requirements

Mathematics students will need to have GCSE grade 6 or above and for Further Mathematics a grade 8 or 9 at GCSE is required.

## Assessment

The course will be assessed by written examinations, all requiring the use of a calculator.

## Financial information

A scientific calculator is required

## Future opportunities

Mathematics A level can enable progression to an extremely wide range of degree courses, depending on subject combinations. Mathematics is essential for many science based courses and Further Mathematics is recommended for many Mathematics / Physics / Engineering degrees.

## Further information

COURSE COMMITMENT

All the courses use one block on the timetable except Further Maths which takes up two blocks. By the nature of the subject we are always building on previous work so it is vital to keep up to date and learn the work thoroughly which is covered by completing regular assignments and practice questions.

## How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Prior Pursglove And Stockton Sixth Form College directly.

Last updated date: 03 January 2017