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Luton Sixth Form

Maths GCSE

Why Study GCSE Maths?

If you are starting Luton Sixth Form College with a grade 3 or lower in GCSE Maths, during your time with us you will be aiming to achieve a GCSE grade 4 at either foundation or higher level. Nearly all UK universities will require a GCSE grade 4 in Maths for all subjects and it is essential for many jobs and apprenticeships. Some A Level and degree courses will require a GCSE grade 5 or 6 at higher level GCSE. If you achieve a grade 4 at school and are thinking of studying Economics, Business or Science at a higher level, you should think about retaking your GCSE Maths to achieve a grade 5 to 6.

Entry Requirements

In addition to our general entry requirements, you must have:

  • GCSE Maths – at least grade 3

The Course

GCSE Maths foundation and higher tier papers will assess the different content areas: Number; Ratio, Proportion and Rates of Change; Algebra; Statistics and Probability; and Geometry and Measures.

There are three assessment objectives:

  • A01: applying standard techniques.
  • A02: reasoning, interpreting and communicating mathematically.
  • A03: solving non-routine problems in mathematical and non-mathematical contexts.

Course Activities

Students learn through a variety of activities including individual study, group activities, worksheets, note-taking and regular assessments in class. Work will be text, number and graph based.

Career and Progression Opportunities

Nearly all UK universities will require at least a grade 4 in GCSE Maths as well as specific subject requirements. Many large employers such as the NHS, high street banks and local government require a grade 4 for office or management jobs.

Course Structure and Assessment

The examination consists of three written papers: a non-calculator and two calculator papers. Each paper will be marked out of 80 and contribute to one-third of the final grade. The examination is externally assessed and taken in June each year.

The syllabus is divided into five areas.

GCSE foundation tier

  • Number – 25%
  • Ratio, Proportion and Rates of Change – 25%
  • Algebra – 20%
  • Statistics and Probability – 15%
  • Geometry and Measures – 15%

GCSE higher tier

  • Number – 15%
  • Ratio, Proportion and Rates of Change – 20%
  • Algebra – 30%
  • Statistics and Probability – 15%
  • Geometry and Measures – 20%

Additional Information

Examination Board: Pearson Edexcel (1MA1).


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