Advisory Committee on Mathematics Education (ACME)

Rises in A-level Mathematics

26 October 2009

Recent years have witnessed a sharp rise in the popularity of mathematics at A-Level. There has been widespread applauding of this positive news, partly relief given the trauma experienced by mathematics in the period immediately following the Curriculum 2000 changes. However, while there has been considerable welcoming of the upward trend, there has been no detailed analysis of the reasons why mathematics has experienced such large increases.

ACME has written a brief paper to attempt to shed some light on the issues at play in the popularity of A-Level Mathematics.This paper, entitled Rises in A-Level Mathematics - Smone Preliminary Thoughts by ACME is principally about the factors which have contributed to the real growth in numbers of learners in the classroom which has undoubtedly occurred. ACME sought views from its Outer Circle of members, and, supported by MEI, through a survey of teacher views. It does not attempt to be a scientific study, but instead be more of a flavour of what may be happening. It is anticipated that DCSF may follow up on this document with a more detailed analysis of the factors at work in A-Level Mathematics, through a survey of both practitioners and students.

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