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Staff:  B. Heron, O. Kearney, C. Mageean, P McCaffrey

KS4 Subject Overview

The GCSE Mathematics specification encourages students to develop fluent knowledge, skills and understanding in applying mathematical methods and concepts. It enables students to reason mathematically, draw conclusions and make deductions and inferences.

Students learn how to comprehend, interpret and communicate mathematical information in a variety of appropriate forms.

The specification has two tiers: Foundation and Higher. Each tier offers students a choice of units suited to a range of abilities, allowing them to demonstrate achievement. The assessment model enables students to monitor their progress and offers opportunities to improve their results.

Students also have the opportunity to achieve a recognition of achievement in Functional Mathematics.


The specification has eight units, four at Foundation Tier and four at Higher Tier:

  • Unit M1: Foundation Tier

  • Unit M5: Foundation Tier Completion Test

  • Unit M2: Foundation Tier

  • Unit M6: Foundation Tier Completion Test

  • Unit M3: Higher Tier

  • Unit M7: Higher Tier Completion Test

  • Unit M4: Higher Tier

  • Unit M8: Higher Tier Completion Test.

Students choose one option from the two available at either Foundation or Higher Tier. They must take two units, one of which must be a completion test.

Exam Board: CCEA


AS/A2 Subject Overview

The GCE Mathematics specification encourages students to extend their range of mathematical skills and techniques. They use their mathematical knowledge to reason logically and recognise incorrect reasoning. They draw diagrams and sketch graphs to help explore mathematical situations and interpret solutions.

Students investigate algebra and functions, geometry, trigonometry, exponentials and logarithms, differentiation and vectors. They also examine quantities and units in mechanics, kinematics, forces and Newton’s laws, statistical sampling, data presentation and interpretation, probability, statistical distributions.

Studying mathematics develops students’ analytical, research and problem-solving skills. It provides a firm foundation for scientific, technical, engineering and mathematical careers. It gives students the knowledge and logic they need to solve scientific, mechanical and coding problems

Exam Board: CCEA


Career Opportunities

Many further and higher educational Institutions require a Grade C at GCSE level in Mathematics.

Most apprenticeships and employers insist on a minimum of Grade C at GCSE level in Mathematics.