There are two tiers of study, Foundation (covering grades 1 – 5) and Higher (covering grades 4 – 9).
Each tier requires knowledge of the following aspects of mathematics in varying depth:
Numbers and calculations Constructions and loci
Percentages and ratio Pythagoras’ theorem
Direct and indirect proportion Trigonometry in right angled triangles
Standard form Vectors
Algebraic manipulation Graphs
Linear and quadratic equations Symmetry and transformations
Geometrical figures and their properties Probability
Mensuration, including area and volume
In addition the following are studied at the Higher tier:
The equation of a circle Functions
Gradients of curves and areas under graphs Surds
Geometric progressions and quadratic series 3-dimensional applications
Trigonometry in non-right angled triangles
Scheme of Assessment
Assessment is through three equally-weighted papers, each of which must be from the same tier of entry. Candidates for the Foundation tier will take Papers 1F, 2F and 3F, and candidates for the Higher tier Papers 1H, 2H and 3H. Each paper covers the entire specification assessed across three objectives:
- use and apply standard techniques;
- reason, interpret and communicate mathematically;
- solve problems within mathematics and in other contexts.
Calculators may not be used in the first paper in each tier, i.e. in either paper 1F or 1H. There is no controlled assessment.
It is essential that pupils be entered for the tier appropriate to their ability and likely performance in the examination since those who fail to achieve the lowest grade awarded in the tier will not have their achievement recorded.
All pupils will be expected to have a scientific calculator with the following functions as a minimum in addition to the basic functions of adding, subtracting, dividing and multiplying: sinx, cosx, tanx and their inverses in degrees; powers and roots, standard form (scientific notation). Calculators with any of the following facilities are prohibited from any examination: databanks, retrieval of text or formulae, QWERTY keyboards, symbolic manipulation, symbolic differentiation or integration. Mathematical equipment such as rulers, compasses and protractors will also be needed throughout the course.
Awarding Body: Edexcel Specification: GCSE Mathematics 1MA