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# Finding AS Maths Really Difficult watch

1. I got an A* in GCSE maths and am now studying AS pure maths with stats. I did the C1 exam this week and although it didn't go quite as well as I wanted it to, I feel confident that I didn't get any lower than a B. I feel quite confident about the S1 exam too.

Now I'm preparing for C2 next week and I'm finding it impossibly hard. I'm averaging at about 50% on mock papers and I'm worried that I've just run out of time to do anything about it. I look at worked solutions and usually understand how they got the answers but then when I come to do a different question on the same topic, I can't do it.

Is there anything anyone can suggest that I try? Is it common for people to do well at GCSE and then really struggle with A Level?
2. (Original post by theperksofbeingnerdy)
I got an A* in GCSE maths and am now studying AS pure maths with stats. I did the C1 exam this week and although it didn't go quite as well as I wanted it to, I feel confident that I didn't get any lower than a B. I feel quite confident about the S1 exam too.

Now I'm preparing for C2 next week and I'm finding it impossibly hard. I'm averaging at about 50% on mock papers and I'm worried that I've just run out of time to do anything about it. I look at worked solutions and usually understand how they got the answers but then when I come to do a different question on the same topic, I can't do it.

Is there anything anyone can suggest that I try? Is it common for people to do well at GCSE and then really struggle with A Level?
GCSE to A Level is a huge jump, you don't expect it to be but it is. As for how to revise, I know it's said a lot but past papers really are your best bet. What particular topics do you struggle with?
3. (Original post by lizard54142)
GCSE to A Level is a huge jump, you don't expect it to be but it is. As for how to revise, I know it's said a lot but past papers really are your best bet. What particular topics do you struggle with?
I'm finding trig identities really hard and I'm also struggling with trapezium rule and some of the trig/radians stuff.
4. (Original post by theperksofbeingnerdy)
I'm finding trig identities really hard and I'm also struggling with trapezium rule and some of the trig/radians stuff.
In regards to trig identities, you are given most of them in the formula booklet, and the rest you can derive from the ones you're given! What's difficult about the trapezium rule?
5. (Original post by lizard54142)
In regards to trig identities, you are given most of them in the formula booklet, and the rest you can derive from the ones you're given! What's difficult about the trapezium rule?
My problem with trig identities is that I'm never sure exactly how to use them, like do I turn everything into tan or sine or cos?

I'm not really sure where I'm going wrong with trapezium rule. I use my calculator to find the y values and I plug them into the formula but my y values always seem to be wrong.
6. (Original post by theperksofbeingnerdy)
My problem with trig identities is that I'm never sure exactly how to use them, like do I turn everything into tan or sine or cos?

I'm not really sure where I'm going wrong with trapezium rule. I use my calculator to find the y values and I plug them into the formula but my y values always seem to be wrong.
You want everything in terms of one trig function only, this makes it easiest to solve (I assume you're talking about equations). Also make sure that you have the same "arguments" i.e. not a mixture of and , only one or the other.

For the trapezium rule remember to double all the "y" values except the two end ones.
7. Regarding the trig identities, the questions layout usually gives a hint as to which identity to use. If you see anything that can resemble a quadratic, try and use the trigs to make it into a quadratic with only one ratio in it.

For the trapezium rule you usually are given a table but if not, make one out of x and y values and take it really slowly. - - Find y values for y0 all the way to yn, however many it is in the question. If as you said you tend to get them wrong, put brackets in, or do each step separately
- Add the first and last values in the table together and all the middle values seperately.
- Double the sum of Middle values and whatever you get for that, add it onto the sum of first+last.
The only thing you have to be really careful in this part is the numerical values you type into the calculator as a single error (such as typing in y0 as 0.988 instead of 0.998) will cause you to loose the answer/accuracy mark.

Then obv whatever value you got for all of that multiplied by h/2.

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8. (Original post by theperksofbeingnerdy)
My problem with trig identities is that I'm never sure exactly how to use them, like do I turn everything into tan or sine or cos?

I'm not really sure where I'm going wrong with trapezium rule. I use my calculator to find the y values and I plug them into the formula but my y values always seem to be wrong.
How can you get the y values wrong? You just plug the x values in and get the y ones from the equation. Thankfully they even give you a calculator to work it out.

Example:

a)We are given all of the x values that increase by 0.25 each interval. And we don't have y when x=1.25.

So you find y by pluging them into the equation y= root(x^2+1)

y= root((1.25^2)+1)
y= 1.60078....
y= 1.601 to 3d.p

b) We need to use the trapezium rule: Area=1/2*h(y0+yn+2(y1+...yn-1))

We know h as 0.25 because x increases by 0.25 each interval. y0 is the first y term which we only use once, hence it isn't doubled, the same goes for yn, it is the last term so we only use it once. Everything in-between is used twice, hence the 2(y1...yn-1).

This then should give you an area. Remember to put u^2 as well.

1/2*h(1.414+2.236+2(1.601+1.803+2. 016))
=1.81u^2 to 3d.p

Some times they give you an integral question so just use the lowest x value and highest x value, integrate the equation and then substitute the lowest and highest x values into the integrated equation and deduct the largest value by the smallest (so you don't get a negative area). You should get something very close to 1.81u^2 like 1.9.
9. (Original post by theperksofbeingnerdy)
I got an A* in GCSE maths and am now studying AS pure maths with stats. I did the C1 exam this week and although it didn't go quite as well as I wanted it to, I feel confident that I didn't get any lower than a B. I feel quite confident about the S1 exam too.

Now I'm preparing for C2 next week and I'm finding it impossibly hard. I'm averaging at about 50% on mock papers and I'm worried that I've just run out of time to do anything about it. I look at worked solutions and usually understand how they got the answers but then when I come to do a different question on the same topic, I can't do it.

Is there anything anyone can suggest that I try? Is it common for people to do well at GCSE and then really struggle with A Level?
ohhh stop it ur tickling my funny bone
10. (Original post by theperksofbeingnerdy)
I got an A* in GCSE maths and am now studying AS pure maths with stats. I did the C1 exam this week and although it didn't go quite as well as I wanted it to, I feel confident that I didn't get any lower than a B. I feel quite confident about the S1 exam too.

Now I'm preparing for C2 next week and I'm finding it impossibly hard. I'm averaging at about 50% on mock papers and I'm worried that I've just run out of time to do anything about it. I look at worked solutions and usually understand how they got the answers but then when I come to do a different question on the same topic, I can't do it.

Is there anything anyone can suggest that I try? Is it common for people to do well at GCSE and then really struggle with A Level?
It's been a while since I did AS so I can't be of help in regards to specific topics, but I did the following: familiarised myself with the formula book so I was 100% aware of the things I did have to remember, wrote the formulae I needed to remember on the wall, went through the text book and did notes on the chapters I struggled with (that's right, full blown maths notes!) and did all the associated questions, and then did all the past papers. You've probably heard this 100 times from your teachers but the real key with maths is practice. It took me so long to click with everything, I (and actually, probably my teachers too!) was convinced I would fail but I came out with an A at the end of A2 so fear not hope this helps!
11. (Original post by EllyAylwen)
It's been a while since I did AS so I can't be of help in regards to specific topics, but I did the following: familiarised myself with the formula book so I was 100% aware of the things I did have to remember, wrote the formulae I needed to remember on the wall, went through the text book and did notes on the chapters I struggled with (that's right, full blown maths notes!) and did all the associated questions, and then did all the past papers. You've probably heard this 100 times from your teachers but the real key with maths is practice. It took me so long to click with everything, I (and actually, probably my teachers too!) was convinced I would fail but I came out with an A at the end of A2 so fear not hope this helps!
That is pretty inspirational, it just shows maths is not about having a "gift" but doing the hard work and being passionate about it.
12. if you read the book and do every single question in it from cover to cover you will get 90-100% if you honestly worked hard it would take you 2 weeks
13. (Original post by theperksofbeingnerdy)
I got an A* in GCSE maths and am now studying AS pure maths with stats. I did the C1 exam this week and although it didn't go quite as well as I wanted it to, I feel confident that I didn't get any lower than a B. I feel quite confident about the S1 exam too.

Now I'm preparing for C2 next week and I'm finding it impossibly hard. I'm averaging at about 50% on mock papers and I'm worried that I've just run out of time to do anything about it. I look at worked solutions and usually understand how they got the answers but then when I come to do a different question on the same topic, I can't do it.

Is there anything anyone can suggest that I try? Is it common for people to do well at GCSE and then really struggle with A Level?

Bottom line is, are you putting in as much time and effort as you can in the most efficient way you can to get the maximum mark you can? If yes, are your grades still low? If yes, the course probably isn't for you.

However, the more likely path for the flowchart to take is that there is more you can do in terms of the way in which you're trying to understand things. Think about the resources you have at your disposal and see if you can find the major cause of the problem. It could be something as simple as not having looked at examples from a certain perspective.

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