A Level in Mathematics (2017 Specification)

Examining Board: Edexcel
Next Examination Period: May / June 2020
Exam Specification Code: 9MA0
Coursework Element: No
Practical Element: No
Course Fee Includes: Online course materials and tutor support. Additional materials available at extra cost.
Fast Track Option: Fast Track A Level Mathematics

Edexcel A Levels are available for study anywhere in the world. Examinations can be taken at any registered examination centre in the world. It is recommended students check with examining centres that the chosen exam is available.

Introduction

The study of Mathematics is highly respected by Universities who look favourably on applicants who can demonstrate knowledge in this subject. The Oxford Learning College course in mathematics will help you to gain knowledge and understanding of Mathematics through the direct study of the original sources. It will encourage and develop your enthusiasm for maths as well as give you the chance to form your own personal responses to the set texts chosen for study. You will further enhance your mathematics and practice skills such as geometry and algebra.

The Edexcel A Level in Mathematics consists of 3 externally examined papers, all of which must be sat in a single year.

mathematics A Level

Entry Requirements

Although the A Level Mathematics programmes build on the course content of GCSE, it is not necessary to have this qualification before undertaking an A-Level. However, in order to meet the demands of the course, it is recommended that candidates have literacy and communication skills equivalent to C or higher at GCSE. Please note that full tutor support is still provided throughout your course duration.

All students must be 16 years of age or above.

A Level Mathematics Course Duration

2 years.

Study Hours Required

Approximately 350 hours.

Awarding Body

Pearson Edexcel

Edexcel A Level Mathematics are available for study anywhere in the world. Examinations can be taken at any registered examination centre in the world. It is recommended students check with examining centres that the chosen exam is available.

Examination Information

Students are required to arrange and pay for their A Level Mathematics examinations and manage the course work element if the subject requires this. Students must check the relevant examination board website for further information and final examination sitting dates for the specification.

All examinations are held during the May / June exam period of every year.

 

A Level Mathematics  Course Content

With the new format of Edexcel A Level, the method of course delivery varies slightly. In the first year of study students will cover Pure Mathematics. The year of study will be divided into ten topics of study as follows:

A Level Mathematics Unit 1: Pure Mathematics Part A

  • Topic 1 – Proof

Understanding the structure of mathematical proof, including proof by deduction, proof by exhaustion and disproof by deduction.

  • Topic 2 – Algebra and functions

Understanding the laws of indices for all rational exponents, rationalising the denominator, working with quadratic functions, solving simultaneous equations and using graphical information to solve equations.

  • Topic 3 – Coordinate geometry in the (x, y) plane

Understanding the equation of a straight line, applying the use of coordinate geometry and understanding the use of parametric equations in modelling in a variety of contexts.

  • Topic 4 – Sequences and series

Understanding the use of Pascal’s triangle, working with sequences (including increasing, decreasing and periodic sequences) and understanding sigma notation for sums of series.

  • Topic 5 – Trigonometry

Understanding the definitions of sine, cosine and tangent, solving trigonometric equations, using trigonometric functions to solve problems in context.

 

A Level Mathematics Unit 2: Pure Mathematics Part B

  • Topic 6 – Exponentials and logarithms

Knowing and using functions and graphs that relate to exponentials and logarithms, understanding the laws of logarithms and understanding exponential growth and decay, along with the consideration of limitations and refinements of exponential models.

  • Topic 7 – Differentiation

Understanding sketching the gradient function for a given curve, second derivatives, the use of second derivative as the rate of change of a gradient, understanding how to apply differentiation to find gradients, tangents and normals.

  • Topic 8 – Integration

Knowing the Fundamental Theorem of Calculus, understanding and evaluating definite integrals, carrying out simple cases of integration by substitution and integration by parts and interpreting the solution of differential equation in the context of solving a problem.

  • Topic 9 – Numerical methods

Understanding that sign change is appropriate for continuous functions in a small interval, solving equations approximately using simple iterative methods, understanding the Newton-Raphson method and using numerical methods to solve problems in context.

  • Topic 10 – Vectors

Using vectors in two dimensions, calculating the magnitude and direction of a vector, adding vectors diagrammatically, understanding and using position vectors, using vectors to solve problems in pure mathematics and context.

 

For the second year of study the focus turns to Statistics and Mechanics, the year will be split between the two sections of study where a more in-depth look is given to the following topics:

 

A Level Mathematics Unit 3: Section A: Statistics

  • Topic 1 – Statistical sampling

Understanding and using the terms ‘population’ and ‘sample’, understanding and using sampling techniques and applying sampling techniques in the context of solving a statistical problem.

  • Topic 2 – Data presentation and interpretation

Interpreting diagrams for single-variable data, interpreting scatter diagrams and regression lines for bivariate data, plus recognising and interpreting possible outliers in data sets and statistical diagrams.

  • Topic 3 – Probability

Understanding mutually exclusive and independent events when calculating probabilities, understanding conditional probability and modelling with probability, including critiquing assumptions made.

  • Topic 4 – Statistical distributions

Understanding and using simple, discrete probability distributions, calculating probabilities using binomial distribution, understanding the use of Normal distribution as a model and selecting an appropriate probability distribution for a context.

  • Topic 5 – Statistical hypothesis testing

Understanding and applying the language of statistical hypothesis testing, conducting statistical hypothesis test using binomial distribution and understanding a sample being used to make an inference about the population.

Section B: Mechanics

 

A Level Mathematics Unit 4: Section B: Mechanics

  • Topic 1 – Quantities and units in mechanics

Understanding and using fundamental quantities and units in the S.I. system, understanding and using derived quantities and units.

  • Topic 2 – Kinematics

Understanding and using the language of kinematics, interpreting graphs in kinematics for motion in a straight line, understanding how to derive the formulae for constant acceleration for motion in a straight line and using calculus in kinematics for motion in a straight line.

  • Topic 3 – Forces and Newton’s laws

Understanding the concept of a force, applying and using Newton’s second law for motion in a straight line, understanding using weight and motion in a straight line under gravity and applying Newton’s third law.

  • Topic 4 – Moments

Knowing and using moments in simple static contexts, including problems involving parallel and non-parallel coplanar forces.

 

Assessment

A Level Mathematics Paper 1 – Pure Mathematics 1 (*Paper code: 9MA0/01)

2-hour written examination

33.33% of the qualification

100 marks

 

A Level Mathematics Paper 2 – Pure Mathematics 2 (*Paper code: 9MA0/02)

2-hour written examination

33.33% of the qualification

100 marks

 

A Level Mathematics Paper 3 – Statistics and Mechanics (*Paper code: 9MA0/03)

2-hour written examination

33.33% of the qualification

100 marks

 

A Level Mathematics Textbooks and Further Reading

  • Edexcel AS and A level Mathematics Pure Mathematics Year 1 Textbook (Publisher: Pearson Education Limited, ISBN: 9781292207599 or 9781292183398)
  • Edexcel A level Mathematics Pure Mathematics Year 2 Textbook (Publisher: Pearson Education Limited, ISBN: 9781292207605 or 9781292183404)
  • A mathematical dictionary such as the Oxford Concise Dictionary of Mathematics.

Additional Stationery

You will also need:

  • Graph paper.
  • Lined paper.
  • A pair of compasses.
  • A ruler.
  • A protractor.
  • A scientific calculator and know how to use it – a graphical calculator can be an advantage.

 

Calculators are allowed in the examinations.

Progression

Our A Level Mathematics programmes are eligible for UCAS points, making them a great choice for students aiming to progress to University. UCAS points are awarded according to the grade earned, please see below for details.

A levels are also widely recognised by employers and are useful for students looking to progress their careers or meet requirements for promotion.

UCAS Points Table

A* = 56
A = 48
B = 40
C = 32
D = 24
E = 16

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