Mathematics A Level
Why would you choose to study Mathematics at A Level? If you enjoy the challenge of problem solving and want to have a range of rewarding careers open to you then Mathematics is the subject for you. Recent reports say that young people with A Level Mathematics earn on average 10% more than those without A Level Mathematics. It is clear that a shortage of highly numerate candidates in the job market means employers pay a premium for the problem solving and analytical skills taught in A Level Mathematics.
Students studying four A Levels will be expected to have a minimum of 6 GCSEs at grade 7, 8 or 9 including English Language and Mathematics at grade 6 or above. Students studying three A Levels will be expected to have a minimum of four GCSEs at grade 6 including Mathematics, with no less than grade 5 in English language and at least one other grade 5 or above.
Mathematics is a beautiful and aesthetically pleasing subject in its own right. The famous Mathematician G H Hardy once wrote “There is no permanent place in the world for ugly mathematics.” The beauty lies not in the shape of the symbols but in the ideas behind them. Mathematics also teaches you the ability to think logically and to follow an argument through to its conclusion. This skill is particularly useful in politics, and many other areas of life. One example of this concerns the statements A implies B and B implies A. If you take the statement “if it is raining then I carry an umbrella” then you cannot say that it follows that “if I am carrying an umbrella then it is raining.” (Why not?)
In A Level Mathematics you study topics such as Algebra, Geometry, Trigonometry and Calculus (known as Pure Mathematics). You can expect to experience a variety of teaching and learning styles throughout the course, including computer algebra and graph plotting, group work and discussion. You’ll also study some Mechanics (Forces and Motion, Vectors, Newton’s Laws). There is also some Statistics work to cover on the course, including topics such as Sampling, Probability and Statistical Distributions.
The course is assessed by examination at the end of the 2nd year. You will sit three, 2 hour papers.
Enrichment and Work Experience
There is an opportunity to complete a one-week work placement in the summer term. Students of Mathematics have enjoyed various enrichment activities, including visiting a speaker from the Mathematics department at the University of Manchester. Mathematics students have also taken part in the UK Senior Maths Challenge.
You will study a combination of Pure Mathematics, Mechanics and Statistics on this course.
Links with other subjects:
Mathematics links well with Engineering, Architecture, Physics, Chemistry, Medicine, Pharmacy, Optometry, Business Studies, Accounting, IT.
Future Career Opportunities
Every year a high proportion of students who have studied Mathematics as one of their A Levels progress to University to study degrees such as Mathematics, Mechanical Engineering, Computer Science, Computer Games Development, Accounting and Finance, Business Management, Economics, Pharmacy and Chemistry. Mathematics can help open doors to many careers.
Why Study at BSFC?
The College is a modern, friendly environment. Your Mathematics teachers work hard to support you and every year a high proportion of our students progress to the top universities.