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Mathematics (Core Mathematics) A-Level at St John Payne Catholic School

Course description

Mathematics can be combined with a wide range of subjects in Arts and Sciences. Nearly all science courses at University include some Mathematics and there can be an advantage to study Mathematics with Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Economics and Geography. An 'A' level in Mathematics is a very respected 'A' level and provides a valuable qualification for many careers including banking, computing, law and engineering. 

Mathematics is usually taken as one 'A' level subject but for those pupils with a natural mathematical ability it is offered as two 'A' levels 'Mathematics' and 'Further Mathematics'. 

The course is designed to follow on from the Higher Tier GCSE syllabus. An A* or A grade at GCSE level in this examination is advisable but this is no guarantee of success. Achieving a strong A* at GCSE level is advisable for students considering taking Further Mathematics. 

6 modules will be examined in total, 3 at the end of Year 12 and 3 at the end of Year 13.

The 'A' level course is a linear one covering a range of elements of Mathematics, Core Mathematics (4 modules), Statistics and Mechanics or Decision. In Core mathematics, algebra, coordinate geometry, functions and trigonometry are developed as well as new topics such as calculus functions. Elementary probability, sampling and significance testing are taught in the Statistics module as well as different types of probability distributions. The Mechanics deals mainly with problems relating to forces and movement of particles. In Decision, students learn algorithms and then apply them to the real world e.g. Sat Nav technology. 

Further Mathematics is regarded as a separate subject but can only be taken with Mathematics. Many topics introduced in the Mathematics course are developed in Further Mathematics. New topics such as polar co-ordinates, complex numbers, critical path analysis are taught in order to give the student the widest possible understanding of the many branches of Mathematics. This course should be of particular interest to students contemplating a Mathematics related degree at University

Course content

‘Core’ maths is a new qualification which will suit ‘students who achieve a B or C in GCSE Maths’, according to Education Minister, Elizabeth Truss. It will also be available to students with an A* and A grade at GCSE who are not taking A or AS Level Mathematics. 

Topics covered will include statistics, probability, advanced calculation and modelling and will develop student’s mathematical thinking and problem solving skills. Core Mathematics is a Level 3 qualification, equivalent in size (and UCAS points) to an AS Level.

The introduction of Core Maths aims to improve the numeracy ability of young people and to enable them to compete in the global job market.

Examinations will be at the end of Year 12.

Entry requirements

Please note the minimum requirement to study AS levels at our Sixth Form is a GCSE points score of 42 points from your best 8 GCSE results. We award 8 points for an A* grade, 7 points for a grade A, 6 points for a grade B, 5 points for a grade C, 4 points for a grade D, 3 points for a grade E, 2 points for a grade F and 1 point for a grade G.

Subject Specific

Maths C

Future opportunities

Possible career choices linking to this subject include:- Financial Services, Engineering, Teaching, Economics, Computing

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact St John Payne Catholic School directly.

Last updated date: 24 June 2015

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