Free online course supporting you to make the transition to university study

Friday 28th May 2021

The Advanced Maths Support Programme (AMSP) supports students in making the transition to university study in mathematics and related subjects.

We are conscious that you will have completed your Year 13 studies in challenging times due to school and college closure and the cancellation of the summer examination period.

The AMSP is offering a free online course designed specially to support students who have studied A level Mathematics and are progressing to an undergraduate degree course this autumn.

The course will help you to

  • consolidate essential A level Mathematics skills
  • learn more about topics you will meet in your first year at university

and includes suggestions for wider reading to explore topics in greater depth.

If you are planning to study mathematics, engineering, physics, chemistry, biosciences, economics, geography, psychology or similar subjects then you will find some or all of the topics useful in building your confidence with mathematics before you start university.

Access to the course is free and you can register now for an account to access the resources.

List of Topics

  • Trigonometric identities
  • Differentiation 1 (Chain, product and quotient rules)
  • Differentiation 2 (Differentiating logs and exponentials, trigonometric functions and implicit differentiation)
  • Integration (Finding areas, integration by substitution, integration by parts and using partial fractions)
  • Differential equations
  • Mechanics 1 (Kinematics in 2D and 3D)
  • Mechanics 2 (Resolving forces, Newton’s laws in 2D and friction)
  • Statistics 1 (Statistical distributions)
  • Statistics 2 (Hypothesis testing)
  • Complex numbers *
  • Matrices 1 (Transformations, invariant lines and points) *
  • Matrices 2 (Determinants and inverses, use of matrices to solve simultaneous equations) *

*  These topics are from AS Further Mathematics

The course is available from 28 June 2021 and each week a further two topics will be released. The course consists of recorded presentations, practice exercises and assessment materials, all designed to support you. You can join the course at any point and you will have access to the materials until 31 December 2021 so that you can continue to refer to the materials during your first term at university.

Professor Paul Glaister, Professor of Mathematics and Mathematics Education at the University of Reading, has extensive experience in supporting university students with the school-university transition. He highly recommends the course to Year 13 students progressing to degree study that features mathematical components:

For nearly 40 years I have been teaching and supporting first-year university students studying mathematics or subjects which have significant mathematical and quantitative components, including engineering, science, and social sciences. I have seen how important the transition from school or college to university study is and how navigating it successfully can be crucial in enabling students to make a good start and thrive in their studies.

Given the disruption Covid-19 has caused, supporting the current cohort of Year 13 A level Mathematics students with this transition is more important than ever. For this reason, a course that focuses on the transition from A level to university level mathematics, developed by leading experts and practitioners, is a very welcome addition to the suite of education recovery support packages from the Advanced Mathematics Support Programme (AMSP).

This free online course will support students in making the transition to university as smooth as possible, through consolidation of essential A level Mathematics skills across a wide range of the subject content. The course enables students to learn more about topics they will meet in their first-year studies and provides opportunities to explore topics in greater depth using suggestions for wider reading.

I cannot recommend this course highly enough to all students currently in Year 13 who have studied A level Mathematics and are progressing to an undergraduate STEM degree programme, or a degree that has a mathematical component, such as engineering, physics, chemistry, biosciences, economics, geography, and psychology. With its wealth of excellent materials and support, it will undoubtedly make a very valuable and important contribution to supporting all such students over the coming months in advance of their university studies.

I also strongly encourage all relevant school and college departments to recommend the course to their students. Likewise, all relevant university departments and staff will benefit from highlighting this course to students who might be studying with them in autumn 2021.

I wish every student the very best for their university studies.

Paul Glaister
Professor of Mathematics and Mathematics Education
Department of Mathematics and Statistics, University of Reading

Paul Glaister

For any further queries about these free resources or to provide feedback please contact us: [email protected].

Share this news article