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Mathematics A Level at Helston Community College

Course description

Mathematics is one of the most general, and one of the most fundamental subjects that you can study. It gives you an excellent grounding for any subject and is itself a prerequisite for many. If you enjoy Mathematics (particularly algebra) and feel confi dent with the work you have met so far at GCSE, then you should consider Mathematics AS or A-level. It is a demanding and challenging subject but it can be an extremely rewarding one if you are prepared to put in time and effort.

Course content

The focus of A-level Mathematics is on algebra and problem solving. The work you will study will consist of Pure (Core) Mathematics and Applied Mathematics. Pure Mathematics provides methods involving algebra, trigonometry, coordinate geometry and calculus which can be used to solve problems in other branches of Mathematics. Applied Mathematics is divided into Mechanics, Statistics and Decision Mathematics. Mechanics is about forces and motion of objects, Statistics is about data analysis and Decision Mathematics is about solving real world problems which are often in a business context.

Throughout the course there will be opportunities to use ICT such as graphical calculators and computer software, together with the wide range of resources and material provided by MEI online. Students have the opportunity to enter national competitions and attend talks and workshops. Students studying AS Mathematics will take three modules, which will be studied and examined at the end of Year 12.

Students studying A2 Mathematics will take a total of six modules over two years. The units in AS Mathematics are:

  • Core Mathematics 1 (C1)
  • Core Mathematics 2 (C2)
  • Statistics 1 (S1)

The units in A2 Mathematics are the same as those listed for AS Mathematics, plus:

  • Core Mathematics 3 (C3)
  • Core Mathematics 4 (C4)
  • Another applied module,typically Mechanics 1 (M1), Statistics 2 (S2), or Decision 1 (D1), depending on availability of these options.

Entry requirements

GCSE Mathematics at grade B or above.


Examinations take place in May/June during Years 12 and 13. All examinations last for 1 hour 30 minutes and all units carry equal weight.

C3 is the only module in this course with coursework, which accounts for 20% of the module. The fi nal module, C4, incorporates an additional examination on mathematical comprehension, which lasts for up to 1 hour and accounts for 20% of the module. Scientifi c calculators may be used in all examinations except C1 which is a noncalculator examination.

Students are able to resit their Year 12 module examinations at the end of Year 13 and the best mark for each will count towards their fi nal A-level grade.

Future opportunities

Mathematical ability is very highly regarded by both universities and employers. An A-Level in Mathematics is essential for many degree courses (such as physics, engineering and, of course, mathematics itself!), and is highly desirable in a wide range of subjects such as chemistry, natural sciences, architecture, computing, accounting, economics, business and psychology to name but a few.

Mathematics can provide you with the problem solving and analytical skills that are useful in almost every career path and it is highly regarded by many employers. If you are thinking of looking for a job straight after A-levels, Mathematics is a great “core” subject - in fact, it is one of the most important subjects you can take. This is because the ability to understand and manipulate numbers and mathematical concepts is extremely useful for almost any job. There is a national shortage of mathematicians, and employment prospects are good.

There is always a demand for employees who can think logically and process information accurately - skills which an A-level in Mathematics will teach you.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Helston Community College directly.

Last updated date: 20 July 2016

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