Mathematics Options (Years 10 and 12) 2011/2012
Years 10 and 12 will soon be making their subjects for GCSE and A level respectively. On that note, please find below some information regarding GCSE Mathematics; GCSE Additional Mathematics; A level Mathematics and A level Further Mathematics:
Mathematics GCSE (Modular) CCEA
Our GCSE students currently benefit from taking a modular examination by sitting a module at the end of Year 11, thus enabling candidates to monitor their progress and work to the best possible outcome.
The Key Features of the examination are as follows:
There are two tiers of entry available giving access to different grades:
HIGHER TIER Grades A* – D (E) Units from T3, T4 and T6
FOUNDATION TIER Grades C – G Units from T1, T2 and T5
It is expected that almost all pupils in Aquinas will be aiming for grades A* o C and hence will enter for the Higher Tier. Occasionally, after consultation, a student enters for the Foundation Tier. These students will generally have a target grade of C, informed by the T3 module result in Year 11 and will most likely take the T3, T5 unit combination.
There are 3 Higher tier units:
Unit 
Target Grades 
Requirement 
Weighting 
When? 
T3 
B – D 
One 2 hour written paper with calculator 
45% Best result of T3 and T4 contributes with T6 result to final GCSE grade 
end of Year 11

T4 
A* B 
One 2 hour written paper with calculator 
end of Year 12 

T6 Completion Paper

A – D (A* only available with almost full marks) 
Two written papers each 1 hr 15 mins, one calculator, one non calculator 
55% 
end of Year 12 (Combines with T3 or T4 result to achieve grade) 
Coursework 
There is no coursework element in this specification 
NB: Only a unit combination which includes T4 is likely to lead to an A* grade.
Also, in order to be fully prepared, it is essential that any pupil intending to study Alevel Mathematics (or another subject (e.g. Physics) with a high mathematical content) has studied all Higher Tier content at GCSE (i.e. T3, T4 and T6).
Hence, in order to keep pupil choice open for further study, all students will be entered in Year 12 for the T4 and T6 unit combination unless an alternate combination is supported by a written parental request.
Requirements for entry to Mathematics at A level
A student choosing to study Alevel Mathematics is required to have a minimum of grade B in GCSE Mathematics or grade C in GCSE Additional Mathematics.
Anyone wishing to study A level Further Mathematics is advised to have an A* in Mathematics and an A* or a high grade A in Additional Mathematics.
Career Implications / Further and Higher Educational Possibilities
A recognised qualification in Mathematics is essential for most careers and post16 educational opportunities. In addition, further study in at least some of the aspects of Mathematics beyond the age of 16 is required for many other A Level subjects, courses at University and careers. This course provides a sound basis for further study of mathematics and related subjects at a more advanced level.
NOTE: A level Mathematics is a prerequisite for entry to university Engineering courses. To keep your options open you should check course requirements for any intended career choice and ensure that you plan and work towards satisfying these requirements.
Additional Mathematics
NB From September 2012 (subject to final ratification from CCEA) CCEA intend to reclassify Additional Mathematics as GCSE Further Mathematics. The following information regarding key features and standard will still apply.
Q. At which students is GCSE Additional Mathematics specification aimed?
A. This specification has been designed to broaden the experience of highattaining students. It is particularly suited to those who:
 will follow mathematical courses at AS/A Level;
 will follow courses at AS/A Level in other subjects that require mathematics beyond GCSE; or
 who wish to extend their knowledge of mathematics beyond that provided by the Higher Tier Specification in Mathematics (hence full knowledge of that specification will be assumed for the Additional Mathematics Examination).
For this reason it is the professional judgement of the Mathematics Teachers in Aquinas Diocesan Grammar School that your child must have achieved a minimum of 70% in either the Christmas or Summer Year 10 Assessment in order to study Additional Mathematics at GCSE. Exception to this will only occur following a strong recommendation from the Year 10 teacher and will be dependent on timetable needs.
Students will find Additional Mathematics considerably more challenging than Year 10 Mathematics. Hence a strong work ethic and willingness to ask questions is essential.
Currently the Year 11 Additional Mathematics students sit GCSE Mathematics at the end of Year 11 and Additional Mathematics is studied in Year 12.
The Examination
Since the examination is aimed at the mathematically more able students, the grades awarded are on the limited grade scale A*E inclusive.
Candidates are required to take two written papers.
There is no coursework element in this syllabus.
Paper 1 (50%) 2 hrs
This will examine topics in Pure Mathematics.
Paper 2 (50%)
This will examine topics in Mechanics and Statistics.
Each paper will consist of a mixture of short and long questions all of which are compulsory.
NB
A student choosing to study Alevel Mathematics in Sixth Form is required to have a minimum of grade B in GCSE Mathematics or grade C in GCSE Additional Mathematics. It is not required that a student has studied Additional Mathematics at GCSE in order to study A level Mathematics but a strong, independent work ethic is essential.
Anyone wishing to study A level Further Mathematics is advised to have an A* in both Mathematics and Additional Mathematics.
A level Mathematics
Currently our students study the EDEXCEL modular specification for A level Mathematics.
From a choice of modules, six are studied, four of which are core modules in Pure Mathematics. The remaining two are made up of a Mechanics and Statistics combination. There is no coursework element in this specification.
The Modules examined in Lower Sixth are:
Core Mathematic 1
Core Mathematic 2
Mechanics 1
Those examined in Upper Sixth are:
Core Mathematics 3
Core Mathematics 4
Statistics 1
At present Year 13 students sit Core Maths 1 in the January Exam session and Year 14 students sit Core Maths 3 in the January Exam session. They are encouraged to make full use of this opportunity in order to reduce their examination load in June and to achieve their full potential.
This course aims to enable pupils to:
(i) develop their understanding and enjoyment of mathematics.
(ii) understand the relationship between “real world” problems and possible mathematical models.
(iii) take increasing responsibility for their own learning and the evaluation of their own mathematical development.
A level Mathematics is an appropriate option for those pupils wishing to pursue a career or further study in a medical, educational, scientific, technological, engineering or social science field.
NB
A student choosing to study Alevel Mathematics is required to have a minimum of grade B in GCSE Mathematics or grade C in GCSE Additional Mathematics. In addition, in order to be fully prepared, it is essential that any pupil intending to study Alevel Mathematics has studied all Higher Tier content at GCSE (i.e. T3, T4 and T6 content).
It is not required that a student has studied Additional Mathematics at GCSE but a strong, independent work ethic is essential.
Further Mathematics
Currently our students study the following units from the EDEXCEL modular specification for Further Mathematics:
Lower Sixth  FP1 (January exam session) 
FP2 (June exam session)
M2 (June Exam Session)Upper SixthM3 (January)
FP3 (June)
M4 or S2 (June)
Further Mathematics allows the students to:
 develop further their understanding of mathematics and mathematical processes in a way that promotes confidence and fosters enjoyment
 extend their range of mathematical skills and techniques and use them in more difficult unstructured problems
The study of Further Mathematics requires knowledge of two AS and two Alevel Mathematics modules by the end of Lower 6th. Hence students taking this option must study A level Mathematics as well as Further Mathematics and will need to have studied Additional Mathematics at GCSE and have sat the T4/T6 module combination at GCSE.
Delivery will still involve a brief introduction to some aspects of the Alevel module content not yet met but a considerable amount of independent study will be essential.
It is strongly recommended that a student choosing to study Alevel Further Mathematics should have achieved an A* in GCSE Additional Mathematics and an A* or high grade A in GCSE Mathematics.
Any pupil interested in studying Further Mathematics either to AS or to A2 level should speak to Mrs. Hart, the Head of Mathematics, as soon as possible and prior to submitting subject options.
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