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Further Mathematics A Level (Block D) at Walton High School

Course description

Further mathematics is designed for students with an enthusiasm for mathematics, many of whom will go on to degrees in mathematics, engineering, the sciences and economics.

The qualification is both deeper and broader than A level mathematics; AS and A level further mathematics build from GCSE level and AS and A level mathematics.

As well as building on algebra and calculus introduced in A level mathematics, the A level further mathematics core content introduces complex numbers and matrices, fundamental mathematical ideas with wide applications in mathematics, engineering, physical sciences and computing.

The non-core content includes different options that can enable students to specialise in areas of mathematics that are particularly relevant to their interests and future aspirations.

A level further mathematics prepares students for further study and employment in highly mathematical disciplines that require knowledge and understanding of sophisticated mathematical ideas and techniques.1

AS further mathematics, which will be co-taught with A level further mathematics as a separate qualification and which will be taught alongside AS or A level mathematics, is a very useful qualification in its own right. It broadens and reinforces the content of AS and A level mathematics, introduces complex numbers and matrices, and gives students the opportunity to extend their knowledge in applied mathematics and logical reasoning. This breadth and depth of study is very valuable for supporting the transition to degree level work and employment in mathematical disciplines.1

 

1. Extract from DfE: Content for further mathematics AS and A level for teaching from 2017

Course content

AS Further Mathematics

  • Cumpulsory Content:Further Pure 1
  • Options: One from Further PUre 2; Further Mechanics; Further Statistics; Decision Maths

A level Further Mathematics

  • Compulsory Content: Further Pure 1; Further Pure 2
  • Options: Two from: Further Pure 3; Further Pure 4; Further Mechanics 1; Further Mechanics 2; Decison Maths 1; Decision Maths 2

The optional units will be selected depending on students’ interest and any requirements for higher education.

The course is demanding mathematically but is very rewarding for those with an interest in it.  It provides an opportunity to develop a wide range of mathematical skills building upon the A Level course.

Further details on the pure mathematics, mechanics and statistics branches of mathematics can be found in the AS/A Level Mathematics section.

DECISION MATHEMATICS

Decision Mathematics covers a wide range of topics including the study of graph theory, networks, critical path analysis, linear programming and game theory.  The pure mathematics content is limited but the ideas are thought provoking and relate to, for example, planning and problem solving.

Entry requirements

Grade 7, 8 or 9 at GCSE

Assessment

Assessment Information AS:

One compulsory paper and one from the option group weighted equally (3 hours of exams)

Assessment Information A2:

Two compulsory papers and two from the option group weighted equally (6 hours of exams)

Financial information

Use of technology permeates through the AS and A level course and students will require a calculator with an iterative function and the ability to compute summary statistics and access probabilities from standard statistical distributions as well as handle matrices up to 3 x 3. 

Calculators with these functions will be offered for purchase through the department at competitive rates.  More details will be made available at the start of the course

Further information

KS5 EXTENSION WORKSHIPS:

Students with an interest in developing their mathematics skills beyond A level are invited to attend a weekly mentoring workshop.  Students work alone, in pairs or in groups on material that is drawn from a variety of sources including ideas raised by students.

The workshops introduce concepts and notations used in first year undergraduate Mathematics courses, improve problem-solving skills and allow an opportunity to develop more formal proof concepts.

STEP/AEA MENTORING:

Some universities, including University of Cambridge and University of Warwick use Sixth Term Examination Papers (STEP) as part of their offer for Mathematics courses.  Others, including Imperial College London, University of Bristol, University of Bath and University of Oxford encourage students to sit these papers.

As part of the extension workshop, students who wish to apply for these courses will be prepared specifically for STEP or AEA papers and university interviews.

SUBJECT CHOICES:

Please select one subject per option block (A, B, C, D and E - listed in Course Title) to ensure there is no clash on your timetable.

By and large most students will follow 3 academic A Levels plus will have the opportunity to add to this with the Extended Project and our Enrichment Programme.

A few students may be able to follow a 4th A Level with advice from our Sixth Form Management team.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Walton High School directly.

Last updated date: 05 January 2017
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