Level 3 Certificate in Mathematics in Context

This course is a one year course. If students wish to study Core Mathematics then they must ALSO choose three A level or Applied subjects.

The course is aimed at those students who are following other A level courses which have a mathematical content or for those students who wish to continue their mathematical studies but do not require an A level in mathematics for their future plans. Students planning to study more mathematically based subjects, including mathematics, statistics, and physics, after Sixth Form, will find that A Level mathematics is likely to be a requirement.

The purposes of this qualification are to help consolidate and build on students’ mathematical understanding and develop further mathematical understanding and skills in the application of mathematics to authentic problems. Students can build a broader base of mathematical understanding and skills in order to support the mathematical content in other Level 3 qualifications, for example, GCE A Level Biology, Economics, Geography, Psychology, Applied Business, or IT. The course aims to prepare students for the range of varied contexts that they are likely to encounter in vocational and academic study, future employment and life.
The content areas covered in this qualification are:
  • Applications of statistics
  • Probability
  • Linear programming
  • Sequences and growth
The content of this qualification is drawn from a range of GCSE content areas predominantly: statistics, probability, algebra and ratio, proportion and rates of change, together with 20% of content drawn from beyond and above GCSE content.
The assessment consists of two written papers:

The first paper is 1 hour 40 minutes long is sat at the end of the course and is 40% of the final assessment. The paper has two sections A and B and pupils are provided with a source booklet prior to the exam. The source booklet will detail two real-life contexts. These contexts will be assessed in the written paper, which requires students to comprehend, interpret and analyse the content in order to answer the questions. One context will be assessed in Section A and the other context will be assessed in Section B. Students will need to refer to the source booklet when answering the questions.

The second paper is also 1 hour 40 minutes long but is 60% of the final mark. The source booklet will detail one themed task in Section A – this will be the same as one of the contexts provided in Paper 1. Students will need to refer to the source booklet when answering the question. Section B will contain three tasks, each of which has a separate theme. The four themes will be assessed in the written paper, which requires students to apply their problem-solving skills in order to answer the questions.

The qualification is acknowledged by both institutes of higher education and employers.