Certificate in Mathematical Studies

AQA Certificate

Exam Board: AQA

1 year

Course Content:

As the name suggests, this course is all about the study of Maths.  But what makes it different to A-level Maths is that everything you learn will be with the aim of using your mathematical skills and knowledge in real-life practical situations.

How much income tax and national insurance will you pay if you earn £30,000 a year?  How long will it take for you to pay off a mortgage or your university student loan?  You can work these out using percentages.

Knowing the air temperature at different heights up a mountain, using correlation and regression, can you predict the temperature at the top?

How far will a London tube train travel every year?  How many baked beans will it take to fill a classroom?  How much air do you breathe every day?  How many mobile phone texts are sent every day in the UK?  You will use Fermi estimations to try to answer these questions.

Knowing that an IQ test follows a Normal distribution, with a mean of 100 and standard deviation of 15, what score do you need to get to be in the top 2% so you can join Mensa?

Mathematical Studies will allow you to answer these and many other questions!


100% exams, consisting of 2 exam papers, each 1½ hours long.

Studying at Alton College:

Lesson activities are wide ranging, from classroom discussions on how best to mathematically model a situation and practising problem solving questions in pairs, to using spreadsheets and calculators to analyse data.

Entry requirements:

You must have at least a grade 5 in GCSE Maths.

Course costs:

Textbook: £25
Student Course Materials, including ICT resources & exercise books: £5
New calculator: £18 - £87, depending on the scientific/graphical model.

Mathematical Studies works well with:

Applied Science
PE & Sport
And (practically) all other subjects!