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Maths - anyone teach it? Can help me with choosing degree?

(7 Posts)
SueW Sat 23-Aug-08 08:14:16

I loved maths at school, took O level early and studied additional maths for a year afterwards but lost my way at A level, getting only a grade E.

20 years later, I feel the need to go back to my original game plan and do an OU degree in maths (I am htinking of Mathematics and Its Learning). Am I completely mad? Did I reach my peak at 16 and it won't be possible to move on? Or did I probably miss out on some fundamental step during transfer from O to A level and if I start with the basic OU course Open Mathematics which is recommended for those with only every day maths skills, I could move forwards with confidence?

(The course might be a bit basic but it's recommended as a part of the degree anyway so I'd probably end up doing it sooner or later)

figroll Sun 24-Aug-08 21:17:45


I have done MU120 and MST 121. If you have done maths A level, you might find MU120 a bit basic, although I enjoyed doing it as it really helped me to brush up on my maths skills before doing MST 121. You can do MST 221 at the same time as MST 121 if you don't mind doing 60 points at one go. So you could do MU 120 this year to see if you like it and then 121 and 221 at the same time next year - ie, 90 points.

I did a 60 point science course last year and found it quite heavy going, although I passed and it has worked out okay.

As for your question about whether MU 120 would help you move forward - yes definitely. It shows you how to use the programmable calculator that I found invaluable when going onto the next course.

SueW Sun 24-Aug-08 21:21:17

Thanks figroll - had just about given up on someone replying!

I'm starting a new job but would like to crack on with this so I think prob MU120 will ease me into study without, I hope, being too demanding.

EachPeachPearMum Sun 24-Aug-08 21:30:40

Could I just warn you that maths at A level is a completely different kettle of fish to maths at GCSE?
A Level maths is actually mathmatics, whereas maths before that is just arithmetic, geometry etc.
A Level takes a different way of thinking, and requires a much deeper understanding.

Don't let me put you off though grin You may find that different teaching nowadays works better for you than the methods used 20 years ago. Frequently teachers use a number of methods to teach a topic, which is very helpful for those who didn't 'get' it the first way IYSWIM.


tink123 Mon 25-Aug-08 10:44:09

I got A in GCSE, found it easy and then AS leve; maths and only got 13% in exam. blush. As OP says it is totally different

ninja Mon 25-Aug-08 10:51:25

I just want to say good luck to you!

The old O Level is a lot better indicator of what maths is further on than the new GCSE - so I imagine with greater motivation you'll be fine.

I don't know anything about the OU courses so I can't help you there, but it sounds as if figroll has given you good advice. However there is a LOT of help on the net for maths.

If you think you might like to ask questions on a Maths Forum join askNrich which has discussion boards at all levels. The moderator is also a teacher on one of the OU maths courses I think.

Maths is great and even better as you take it further. Post on here if you have any problems and I'm sure there are a few people who'll take a look!

SueW Mon 25-Aug-08 12:41:14

Thanks for the extra responses.

I work in a school so I am hoping that I'll be able to find help there if I need it, particularly as the OU tutorials apparently depend on where people studying the course are so I may or may not have access to them.

Ninja I suspect motivation - or lack of it - was part of the reason for my A level result. Once I had an unconditional offer of a great job, I lost any impetus to try hard for the exams. blush

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