Over 650 schools and colleges offer Core Maths as part of their 16-19 curriculum. Core Maths is taught alongside A levels or vocational courses.
When planning to set up provision for Core Maths, there are a number of questions that schools/colleges need to consider
- how will Core Maths fit into our 16-19 curriculum offer?
- who will teach it?
- how will we promote the course and recruit students?
- what resources and support do we need to teach the course successfully?
Schools and colleges have taken different approaches to organising the course and teaching the course depending on their circumstances and the aspirations of their students.
Core Maths is a flexible qualification, which can be taught over one or two years. The teaching time is 180 guided learning hours, equivalent to an AS level. It can be offered alongside a programme of 3 A Levels or equivalent Technical and Applied qualifications. Many schools/colleges offer Core Maths as an optional course in an “enrichment” slot, with other options like the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) or AS courses.
The course is designed so that much of the content of Core Maths can be taught through a contextualised problem-solving approach. In some schools/colleges, teachers of other quantitative subjects, such as geography, business studies and psychology, teach all or part of the course.
Developing awareness and increasing take-up of Core Maths
The School of Education, University of Leeds produced a series of briefings and videos to communicate the findings of their research into the impact of Core Maths.
The AMSP have published case studies that explore what schools and colleges have done to increase participation in Level 3 maths through the introduction of Core Maths.
Examples of Core Maths in various settings
Students follow 1, 2 or 3-year study programme, and Core Maths is a compulsory part of these, alongside a vocational course. Taught as a one-year course, with 2 sessions per week. Students apply for HE courses where UCAS points are more relevant than 3 A level grades.
Core Maths is an optional course, blocked with EPQs and other extra-curricular options. Students who opt for Core Maths study it alongside 3 A level subjects. Taught as a one-year course in Year 12 or Year 13, with 3 sessions per fortnight. Course is promoted in Year 11 maths lessons, assemblies and open evening events.
The early take-up of Core Maths: successes and challenges
The University of Leeds’ report into the early take-up of Core Maths has further examples of how schools and colleges have organised their provision for Core Maths.
Support from the AMSP
The AMSP can provide you with a wide range of support to help you to plan and prepare for the introduction of Core Maths. We can help with:
- advice and information on setting up Core Maths, including the opportunity to discuss your specific needs with your AMSP Area Coordinator
- supporting teachers to develop the pedagogy and subject knowledge to teach Core Maths effectively through a flexible range of professional development courses
- resources for teaching and learning Core Maths
- information and materials to help you with recruitment, to explain to students and their parents/carers what Core Maths is and the benefits of taking it
If you would like to speak to a member of the AMSP team about support for teaching Core Maths in your school/college then please contact us [email protected]