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How to Revise for A-Level Maths

How to Revise for A-Level Maths

4 min Read|June 10 2024
|Written by:

Dr Rahil Sachak-Patwa

Contents

You’ve been working hard, non-stop for the past two years, and now the final stretch is finally upon you. If you’re a few months or weeks away from your A-Level Maths exams, then this is the article for you. Going through the very top tips for revising Maths, we’ll demonstrate how you can get the most out of your revision.

Whether you’re starting with a three-month countdown or only have a few weeks to spare, this guide will give you an overview of how to revise for A-Level Maths. As you’re up against nearly 85,000 other students, there is stiff competition in Maths, with high grade boundaries favouring only the very best students.

A-Level maths entries

Source.

In our revision guide, we’ll be covering major points from:

  • Difficulty-Based Revision
  • Using Past Papers
  • Teaching Someone Else
  • Revision Banks
  • Question Bunching

Let’s get right into it.

Difficulty-Based Revision

Especially at A-Level, Maths is an enormous subject, spanning over many major topics and more subtopics than you can count. While working through the specification for your specific exam board will let you know which skills you need to learn, it doesn’t necessarily have to be in the order that you studied them previously.

Instead of working methodically through the curriculum, one of the best ways that you can radically boost your mark with the least effort possible is by focusing on the areas that you know least about. This is an example of the 80:20 rule, with 20% of the work yielding 80% of the results.

80-20 rule

Source.

By creating a checklist of all of the different topics and then rating them either easy, medium, or hard, you’ll know exactly where you need to start your revision. As you get better at questions you would have previously been unable to answer, you’ll be effectively boosting your mark, rather than just further refining skills that you’re already confident in.

Work smarter, not harder!

Using Past Papers

If you’re studying A-Level Maths, that probably means you’ve already done fairly well at GCSE Maths, so we’ll keep this tip short. Past papers are absolutely one of the most impactful resources that you can turn to in almost any subject.

By going through previous papers in timed conditions, you’re able to actively practise the skills you’ve been studying. As Maths is a right or wrong marking subject, it’s also incredibly easy to mark your own papers, working out your overall grade.

Due to this, you can actively track your progression as you complete more papers. Equally, when marking, you can discover areas that you may have gotten wrong, helping you to learn the skills from the mark scheme and get them right next time.

Past papers are almost always one of the best ways to revise A-Level Maths.

Teaching Someone Else

As Maths is a skill-based subject, you need to know a certain method or formula to be able to solve a question. One great peer-lead way of revision is to try and teach someone else a concept. You could do this with a friend that’s also studying Maths A-Level, using them as a resource.

If you’re able to effectively teach something to someone, then you’re able to cement that knowledge in your own mind. Equally, if you find a concept hard to explain, then you probably don’t fully understand that yourself. From there, you know you need to go back over the topic.

Working in groups or pairs is a great way to break up independent revision and bring a new method to your revision.

Revision Banks

As a topic-heavy subject, you can create revision banks during your A-Level Maths revision, creating one for each topic. On an A4 sheet of paper, you should summarize everything you know about a topic. From there, you’ll have a go-to sheet where you can find key formulas, main ideas, and techniques that help you solve questions.

These can act as great refreshers, with reading over them and even reproducing them frequently building them up in your active memory.

Question Bunching

While past papers are a wonderful resource for Maths A-Level, due to the popularity of the subject, you’re also able to find a range of different question banks online. With this, you could use a resource that groups all of the questions that have come up on one topic over all of the past papers.

With the popularity of this subject, there are an endless amount of resources that you can turn to out there. By finding question bunches, you’re able to work through a larger group of questions on one skill. Not only does this ensure that you know exactly how to answer them, but by using a cross-paper bank, you’ll be able to see how examiners tend to structure a question from a specific topic.

By doing this, you’ll instantly know which skills are being tested when they come up on your paper, helping you to move in the right direction towards solving it as quickly as possible.

A-Level Maths Q&A Revision Notes

One of the most effective tools you can use are A-Level Maths Q&A Revision Notes. These are comprehensive resources that provide detailed answers and explanations for a wide range of questions. They help you understand the reasoning behind each answer, which is crucial for mastering complex topics and improving your problem-solving skills.

Final Thoughts

A-Level Maths is a difficult subject that requires students to have a lot of on-hand mathematical skills, as well as logic, to discern exactly which topics a question is asking for. If you get ahead of your revision process and incorporate some of these top tips, you’ll be well on your way to having everything you need for exam day.

If you want to fast-track your revision and get additional support, then working with one of the TutorChase top A-Level Maths tutors is the perfect solution. Each tutor has years of experience, often having studied Maths at university after getting top marks in their own exams.

With a tutor, you can use your 1-1 sessions to cover topics that you struggle with, learning new methods and refining your skills. After ongoing support from a tutor, you’ll be completely ready for your A-Level Maths exam.

Best of luck this May and June!

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Dr Rahil Sachak-Patwa

Written by: Dr Rahil Sachak-Patwa

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Oxford University - PhD Mathematics

Rahil spent ten years working as private tutor, teaching students for GCSEs, A-Levels, and university admissions. During his PhD he published papers on modelling infectious disease epidemics and was a tutor to undergraduate and masters students for mathematics courses.

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