“The book of nature is written in the language of Mathematic”Galileo
In Year 7, pupils are taught in mixed ability classes in order to provide a firm foundation of knowledge as the mathematical backgrounds of incoming pupils can differ significantly. The resources used alongside textbooks include puzzles and games. There is an emphasis on developing problem-solving techniques alongside extending and developing core mathematical skills. Extension work is on offer in year 7 within all classes. From Year 8 pupils are placed in sets in order to maximise their progress within the subject. Pupils cover topics in the National Curriculum with an emphasis on a deep understanding of methods and then their application. We try to provide as broad an experience as possible. At all times we encourage mathematical development and confidence through a combination of experimentation, discovery, explanation, practice and experience.
All pupils sit IGSCE at the end of Year 11. Higher sets also study Additional Maths which provides an interesting and stimulating course as well as a firm foundation for further studies in Mathematics and Further Mathematics at A level without diminishing the breadth of subjects that the more academically able wish to study.
Refer to the Lower and Middle School Curriculum Guide for a more detailed breakdown of how Maths is taught at MCS (published Michaelmas 2020).
At A-level there are large numbers studying A-level Maths, and over a third of pupils typically opt to study Further Maths as well as Maths. As we have a significant number of pupils studying Further Maths we are able to offer various Further Maths options, including Mechanics, Statistics, and Extra Pure.
Refer to the Sixth Form Curriculum guide for a more detailed breakdown of the A-level Maths programme.
If you are thinking about studying Maths in the Sixth Form at MCS, you might want to start reading around the subject before you join. Our Study Preparation guides are a useful tool, detailing further reading around key topics.
“Wherever there is number, there is beauty.”Proclus
There is a thriving mathematical life at MCS beyond the confines of the exam specifications. From time to time, outside speakers are invited to give popular lectures on mathematical topics and we take some Sixth Form students to Oxford University Maths Institute lectures. Pupils are entered for national mathematics competitions (in which we have an excellent record) and internal problem solving challenges take place within the school.
Pupils from Magdalen College School regularly receive offers to study Maths at top universities. However, as Maths is essential for all STEM subjects and Economics, many other pupils choose to apply their maths in other disciplines. Maths and mathematical degrees are highly valued and graduates are employed in a wide range of occupations from finance to engineering, biomedical science to manufacturing, all of which use an increasing amount of mathematical modelling.