Post-Exam Thoughts: AQA Certificate Further Maths Calculator-Allowed – 1 June 2012


Snappy title, eh? This afternoon I was back into school to complete the second paper of the AQA Further Maths Certificate, the exam in which a calculator is permitted.

WEAPON OF CHOICE: My Casio fx-85ES calculator, as used in this exam. (IMG_8658)


One of the problems I had in the run-up to this exam was that I was capable of most of the Maths, but wasn’t necessarily sure what order to do what process in. Many of the questions carry a lot of weight (some are worth up to 6 marks each). A new qualification, there’s only a few practice papers available, yet the questions vary so much in how they are phrased, it’s difficult really to practice.

I did, though, make a good start: I remembered how to write the equation of a circle, found it relatively easy to factorise where required, and could do the Pythagoras’s Theorem question with ease. I struggled more with the ones on algebraic proof and a particularly nasty one about the area of a triangle within a circle.

Given how badly I’d expected it to go, I can’t complain massively. After all, this is supplementary to the real GCSE Maths grade (in which, after a retake and much work, I attained my dreamed A*). While I know I won’t come out with an enviable grade for this paper, as someone hoping to do Maths at A-Level, this is certain to have given me a great foundation for the Maths to come in the next two years.

Andrew Burdett

Andrew Burdett is a 20-year-old from Maidenhead in Berkshire. A self-professed "lover of life", he enjoys a busy calendar of activities and engagements. With regular involvement in the Scout Association and his church, he was made Head Boy in his final year at school. After a gap-year spent as a Teaching Assistant at a local junior school, he is now half-way through his Journalism Studies degree at the University of Sheffield. In his spare time, he swims, reads, and enjoys writing about himself in the third-person.

1 Response

  1. Jacob Hayden says:

    Hey i did that too this afternoon. I felt the same way about not being able to practice and really struggle with the non-calculator paper but this I feel, like you was relatively easy with some clever questions in their too.