GCSE Maths: Overview Note


I created this note as an overview of the GCSE Maths topics you need to know for the exam.
Andrea Leyden
Note by Andrea Leyden, updated more than 1 year ago
Andrea Leyden
Created by Andrea Leyden almost 9 years ago

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GCSE Maths OverviewThe questions on the maths paper will be based on a variety of topics which can be grouped into 4 main areas: Algebra and Number Geometry and Measures Statistics and Probability Ratios, Proportion and Rates of Change

Algebra & NumberAlgebra is normally the first topic to be covered in maths as it provides the backbone of understanding for almost all of the other areas you will work on. The main areas you need to practice are: The Basics: This involves understanding how equations work and manipulating mathematical formula by rearranging expressions and forms. You need to know how to factorise, expand and simplify a range of equations including quadratic, factors and notations such as ab = a x b, 3y = y x y x y or 3 x y Graphs: You will be required to know how to plot and coordinate graphs by interpreting equations using the form y = mx + c as well as linear and quadratic functions. In the case of certain graphs such as financials, you may be asked to interpret your findings in a couple of sentences

Geometry & MeasuresThere’s a lot more to Geometry than using your compass which including measurement, theorems, vectors and even more formulae. Here’s what you need to know for your exam: The Basics: The first thing you need to learn is how to construct shapes, lines and angles. You need to be able to define properties of shapes such as a tangent, arc and sector of a circle as well as interpret 3D shapes. Calculation: Here’s where the rough work comes in. There are geometric equations such as Pythagoras’ theorem and trigonometric ratios you need to know and be able to apply. Practice definitely required! Vectors: When approaching vectors, it’s vital you understand how to describe a vector in terms of magnitude (how long it is) and direction. You will also need to know how to add, subtract and multiply vectors.

Statistics & ProbabilityThese two sections usually come as a pair but there is a contrast between the way you approach and comprehend them. However, there are some similarities which crossover as both involve visuals such as tables, charts and diagrams.Below is a run-down of what you should know for the exam: Statistics: Along with creating visuals which you will need to interpret, you will work with sampling as a method of data collection. For example, you will need to know about distribution of a sample in terms of age or gender. Probability: For this unit, you will be asked the outcome or probability of a certain event occurring. To apply this well, get your head around the idea of randomness and chance by testing yourself with different scenarios as much as you can.

Ratios, Proportion and Rates of ChangeBy this stage of your GCSE maths revision you’re bound to be tired. Don’t worry, there is light at the end of the tunnel! This last topic of ratios calls on a lot of the knowledge you already know so you’re almost at the finish line. This areas consists of: Ratios: Expressing fractions as ratios should be easy for you now! You also need to relate ratios to fractions and linear equations. Understanding and relating proportion to ratios will also be studied here Measurement: There are numerous units of measurement so you need to be able to translate these interchangeably. This could be relating measurements such as area, length, mass Rates of Change: The difficult part of this section is being able to solve and interpret rates of change in terms of numbers, algebraic equations and graphs. An example of this interpreting answers in growth and decay problems

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