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Maths in Context Level 3 Certificate at Wyedean School and Sixth Form Centre

Course description

The edexcel level 3 certificate in mathematics in context is a new post 16 qualification, designed to equip learners to develop and apply real world maths skills.

These skills will help pupils progress to university, employment, or higher apprenticeships in a wide range of industry sectors, or professional training.

Mathematics in context promotes the use of mathematics in real life situations, such as understanding percentage increases in your salary and calculating how long it would take to pay off a student loan.

Course content

There are four content strands, which are taught over a two year period.

The strands have been selected due to their relevance and application to a wide range or areas of study and employment.

The four strands are

  • Application of statistics – this is the study of the collection, organisation, analysis, interpretation and presentation of data. It is used in areas of study such as actuarial science, biology, business and economics, IT and psychology.
  • Probability – probability is used to determine a numerical value for the chance or risk of events happening. Probability is used in areas of study such as finance, science, artificial intelligence, business, computer science and philosophy.
  • Linear programming- this is a problem solving approach to achieve the best outcome (such as maximum profit or lowest cost) through consideration of conditions that can be modelled by linear relationships. Linear programming can be applied to a variety of contexts in business and industry.
  • Sequences and growth – an understanding of sequences, growth and decay can be applied to a variety of real- life contexts and problem solving tasks including population growth, epidemics, earthquakes and radio- active decay.

Entry requirements

In order to study mathematics in context you will need to achieve at least a C grade in GCSE mathematics.



All students are expected to complete an independent learning task (ILT) after each section of work is completed. After approximately one month into the course in year 12 students will have an assessment to judge their suitability for the mathematics in context course.

In support of the ILTs and to aid in reviewing and transforming their progress and achievement, students will also sit accumulative tests at regular intervals throughout the course.


You are required to sit two exams at the end of the two year course, in order to be awarded a level 3 certificate in mathematics (similar to an AS). Both examinations cover materials from all four strands of the course.

The first paper is a comprehension paper and worth 40% of the total qualification, paper 2 is an application paper and worth 60% of the total qualification.

Both examinations will all take place during the summer examination period for year 13 students.

Each exam is 1 hour and 40 minutes long and all exams are marked externally.

Future opportunities

Following the mathematics in context course provides the mathematical skills to support students progressing to university to study subjects that ‘use’ mathematics, including biology, business, geography, nursing and psychology.

If you go on to employment then employers look for hard-working, selfmotivated, and intelligent people to join their staff.

Obtaining a Maths AS level qualification shows that you have what it takes. You may not use Algebra or Probability in your job every day, but the transferable skills of analysis, logic, and problem solving will always come in handy.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Wyedean School and Sixth Form Centre directly.

Last updated date: 31 May 2016

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