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Maths & Further Maths

Maths is taught to all pupils in Years 8 -10 and is a compulsory subject at GCSE Level. Some pupils can choose Additional Maths as a GCSE option.


Mathematics is fundamental to life in the sense that its unique language and forms of notation help us to calculate, estimate and problem-solve. It also informs many of the choices and decisions we make about real-life issues and challenges and the actions that we subsequently take. Through engagement with issues which have current and future relevance to young people, teachers can help pupils to see the relevance of mathematics and financial capability to real life.

In Years 8-10 the pupils have the opportunity to develop their knowledge and understanding in the following areas:


  • Number

  • Algebra

  • Shape, Space and Measures

  • Handling Data

The assessment arrangements at Key Stage 3 require that the pupils undertake Using Maths Tasks which involve their ability to apply knowledge acquired in the above areas.  These tasks are assessed by the class teacher and at the end of the Key Stage an overall level in Using Maths will be awarded.


Mathematics is a subject that opens doors and provides opportunities: doors to employment and further/higher educational courses and opportunities to learn about the relevance of mathematics to everyday life.

Mathematics is all around us. It exists in the proportions of artistic works, in the scores of our favourite songs and in the physical structures we live and work in daily. It is also the bedrock of many other subjects including the Sciences, Economics and Engineering and is extremely relevant to subjects like Psychology and Design.

The study of mathematics can develop a host of skills that are essential to students continuing in their studies as well as those currently in or entering the workplace. These include problem-solving, logic and reasoning, and attention to detail. Mathematics can also lead to careers in finance, business, IT and teaching, among others.

The CCEA GCSE Specification gives students opportunities to:

  • develop their knowledge, skills and understanding of mathematical methods and concepts;

  • acquire and use problem-solving strategies;

  • select and apply mathematical techniques and methods in mathematical, every day and real-world situations;

  • reason mathematically, make deductions and inferences, and draw conclusions; and

  • interpret and communicate mathematical information in a variety of forms.

The content of each GCSE Mathematics unit relates to:

  • number and algebra;

  • geometry and measures; and

  • statistics and probability.

The units all provide opportunities for students to develop and apply their mathematical skills to real-life contexts.

The five available units are:

  • Unit T2: Foundation Tier

  • Unit T5: Foundation Tier Completion Test

  • Unit T3: Higher Tier

  • Unit T4: Higher Tier

  • Unit T6: Higher Tier Completion Test.

The grades that students can achieve depend on the units that they sit for assessment.


GCSE Further Mathematics has replaced the Additional Mathematics specification and retains much of the same content. Further Mathematics involves studying mathematics at a level beyond GCSE Higher Tier. It can act as a stepping stone that gives students a sound basis for studying GCE Mathematics, introducing some of the mechanics and statistics topics that appear at AS/A2 level.

Further Mathematics can also help students progress to other studies that require mathematical knowledge and skills, for example higher level science, geography, technology or business.

The Further Mathematics specification consists of two units, and students must study both.

In Unit 1: Pure Mathematics students investigate algebra, trigonometry, differentiation, integration, logarithms, matrices and vectors.

Unit 2: Mechanics and Statistics includes exploring kinematics, vectors, forces, Newton’s Laws of Motion, friction, moments, understanding and using statistical terminology, measures of central tendency and measures of dispersion, probability, and bivariate analysis.

Through these units students will have opportunities to:

  • develop their mathematical knowledge, skills and understanding;

  • select and apply mathematical techniques and methods in mathematical, everyday and real-world situations;

  • reason mathematically, interpret and communicate mathematical information, make deductions and inferences, and draw conclusions; and

  • design and develop mathematical models that allow them to use problem solving strategies and apply a broader range of mathematics to a variety of situations.


The table below summarises the structure of the GCSE Further Mathematics course:

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