Mathematics is a universal subject that combines especially well with the sciences and computing. An essential part of mathematics is the challenge of analysing a problem and the satisfaction of achieving a 'correct' answer. If you choose mathematics you will not have to write essays, but you will need to communicate well in written work to explain your solutions. Mathematics is not about learning facts. You will not achieve success by just reading a textbook or by revising from detailed notes; you actually need to 'do' mathematics.
A Level Mathematics is part of The Sciences Pathway, which also includes Biology, Chemistry, Further Maths (AS), Psychology and Physics. You will choose 4 AS Level subjects from this pathway in your first year, and then choose 3 subjects to study at A2 in your second year.
Qualification: GCE A Level
Level: Level 3
Timetable: This forms part of a full time programme of study of under 16 hours per week. You will receive your timetable when you enrol.
Start Date: *START*Fees: For fee information please refer to The Sciences Pathway.
Students who enjoy mathematics and want a much sought-after qualification for entry to higher education. Find out more about the course by talking to your mathematics teachers or by visiting the Edexcel website (www.edexcel.org.uk).
The minimum entry requirement is 5 GCSEs at grades A*-C in appropriate subjects, though exceptions may be made for mature students. You must also have achieved a minimum grade B in Maths on the Higher Tier paper. A GCSE in your home or first language, other than English, cannot be counted as one of the 5 qualifying GCSEs. You will need to sit an entrance test to confirm if you are suitable for the course.
The pure maths element of the course develops some of the areas studied at GCSE, such as algebra, trigonometry and graphs. The statistics units involve collecting, analysing and displaying data. This is a useful foundation if you wish to progress to university to study accountancy, business, economics, psychology or the life sciences. The mechanics units deal with applications of maths in physics-type situations. Topics such as momentum, Newton’s laws of motion and moments of force are dealt with using mathematical techniques. This will be useful if you wish to go on to study engineering, technology or applied science at university.
Maths is taught using a range of methods, including examples from the textbook and the PLATO computer package in the Flexible Learning Centre. There are structured progression tests throughout the course so that you can judge your progress.
AS Units EDEXCEL 8371
A2 Units EDEXCEL 9371
“I absolutely love Science, so the A Level Science Pathway was the perfect route for me. The laboratories here are unbelievable and the topics are really interesting, especially neurology which is fascinating. I hope to study for a PhD in Biology and know that West Thames College will help towards making that happen."