The Maths GCSE Course is designed for students wanting to pass the latest GCSE syllabus exams. The course starts by covering basic mathematical skills before progressing onto more advanced topics as you develop. Maths GCSE is a key requirement for many job roles and passing this qualification demonstrates an understanding of numbers and an ability to work with them. A reasonable level of proficiency in arithmetical skills is assumed.

This GCSE places great emphasis on "doing mathematics" and relating this wherever possible, to everyday life. Certain techniques and formulae need to be learnt, but the emphasis on "doing" means that you should work carefully through all the examples and exercises in order to be able to solve problems effectively.

Each lesson begins with a set of clearly stated objectives and an explanation of its place in the overall programme of study. Effective learning is encouraged through frequent activities and self-assessment questions. There are thirteen tutor-marked assignments and a practice exam paper.

The Syllabus:

The Maths GCSE course prepares students for the new AQA GCSE Mathematics Specification 8300 for exams in May/June 2017 and later years. This syllabus has been chosen as it is the most suited to distance learning. Assessment is by three examination papers.

The course covers both the intermediate and higher tier levels and it is a personal choice which you decide to complete. You only need to decide which tier to choose when you arrange your exams, and this can be discussed with your tutor as you progress with your studies.

Please Note: This is a new linear syllabus with first exams in May/June 2017. The new syllabus GCSE's now have a different grading system to previous years. The grading system for new GCSE's is Grades 1 to 9 with 9 being the highest grade.

GCSE Mathematics has a Foundation tier (grades 1 – 5) and a Higher tier (grades 4 – 9). Students must take three question papers at the same tier. All question papers must be taken in the same series. Some students may only need to obtain a Grade 4 or 5 if they progressing onto a further education course, in which case you would probably be best sitting the foundation papers while some courses such as a Maths A Level may only accept students if they have completed the GCSE at higher tier.

  • Paper 1 is 33.33% of the total marks. The paper is a Written Paper (Non-calculator). The exam is 1 Hour, 30 Minutes and is 80 marks.
  • Paper 2 is 33.33% of the total marks. The paper is a Written Paper (With calculator). The exam is 1 Hour, 30 Minutes and is 80 marks.
  • Paper 3 is 33.33% of the total marks. The paper is a Written Paper (With calculator). The exam is 1 Hour, 30 Minutes and is 80 marks.

There is a mix of question styles within the exams, from short, single-mark questions to multi-step problems. The mathematical demand increases as a student progresses through the paper.

The course consists of the following Units:

Foundation Level:

  • Unit 1 – Numbers
  • Unit 2 – Money
  • Unit 3 – Measurement
  • Unit 4 – Basic Algebra
  • Unit 5 – Basic Trigonometry and Vectors
  • Unit 6 – Basic Geometry
  • Unit 7 – Further Geometry
  • Unit 8 – Probability and Statistics

Additional units to be studied by students aiming for the higher tier:

  • Unit 9 – Further Numbers and Equations
  • Unit 10 – Higher Algebra Topics
  • Unit 11 – Further Geometry and Trigonometry
  • Unit 12 – Further Probability and Statistics
  • Unit 13 – The Examination

Prerequisites:

There are no prerequisites for starting this course, however a reasonable level of proficiency in arithmetical skills is assumed.

Coursework:

No coursework is required.

Additional Reading:

The course is fully self-contained and is designed to prepare you for the examination without the use of further textbooks. Additional recommended reading is detailed within the course for students who feel they need further practice or an alternative viewpoint .

Student Support:

Every student receives a personal tutor with whom they should keep in regular contact. All tutors are fully qualified experienced teachers holding either a Postgraduate Certificate in Education or a degree in education. Most work from home and are able to offer flexible contact times. The tutor will contact students with an introductory letter and a telephone call to help decide on a study plan. They will also let the student know the best ways and times for contact.

There is no limit on how often you can contact your tutor. The advice and encouragement our tutors provide are an important part of your learning experience. You can contact your tutor by Phone, Post or Email. There are tutor-marked assignments (TMA's) in every course. These help the student to consolidate their learning and prepare for examinations.

All tutors have a Freephone 0800 telephone number and most will have Skype capabilities. Whilst you are still actively submitting assignments, you should expect to be in contact with your tutor regularly. Remember, to get the most out of your tutor, you will need to tell them when you need assistance.

Examination Centres:

All distance learning students will sit their exams as a private candidate in a registered school or college. The finding of an examination centre and the booking of exams is the responsibility of the student. In December/January students are contacted and advised to start arranging their examinations. AQA have over 300 exam centres in the UK. Examination officers are available for registered students for advice on finding suitable centres or you can use AQA’s Private Candidate Page which details information about being a private candidate and has a search facility showing a small selection of centres set out geographically.

Nearest Examination Dates:

Please review the GCSE Overview page for detailed information on possible examination dates and procedures.

GCSE Examination Fees:

Examination fees need to be paid direct to your chosen exam centre. Prices for exams will vary depending on the exam centre's administration costs. You can find out further information about the Private Candidate process and locate suitable exam centres from the AQA Private Candidate Page.

Studying from Abroad:

It is possible to study GCSE Courses from anywhere in the world. However some home study courses are easier to study from abroad than others and some restrictions to the type of tuition available apply. If you wish to study a GCSE then you will need to sit the examinations in the UK. Please remember that most GCSE's have several examinations which may well be spread over several weeks. If you are studying outside of the UK then the Maths IGCSE may be a better alternative for you.

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