jj.repinec
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I am in Year 12 (doing first year of new a level or as level) and have chosen the subjects Biology, Chemistry, Maths and Further Maths. As I am looking to study medicine I found out through the university requirements that a fourth subject does not need to be done at AS level. Therefore I'm in a big dilemma on whether to drop Further maths or not. The only benefit I see of choosing to continue is that my headteacher has told me that Further Maths helps with A level Maths (or AS level maths) and apparently makes it easier. But i want to know if does it really help with normal maths and how much? It would be really helpful if you told me what specific topics it would help in as well. Is it really worth to continue the subject?
Thank you
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Kvothe the Arcane
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AS Further Maths does not really help with normal A-level maths unless you are taking one of the 2,3 Fp modules at AS which seems unlikely.
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TobyReichelt
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On the contrary Kvothe, I found that the skills I developed in further maths benefitted me within regular maths. Notation, presentation, problem-solving, and a skill to realise what is happening within a question as opposed to just being told. Playing around with maths makes me understand maths, and equally enough within physics I have found that I apply mathematical skills gained in further maths.

Now, I can't vouch for biology or chemistry, as I take neither. But all the sciences require a set of good maths skills. So, I would conclude that developing good mathematical ability helps one in all sciences.

But that's just my opinion.

Others have not shared this, as they find that further maths only helps them in further maths. It's different from person to person, really.
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ksma1999
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If you think that by dropping FM you could do better in your other subjects I would 100% drop it. If it's not going to help you get into uni and may actually mean that you do worse in the subjects that will (you'll have less time for them) then there is no point. However, I do think that FM made me better at single maths, not really in any specific area (except maybe at using the discriminant in FP1/C1&2), but it definitely improved my general algebraic skills and mathematical ability. It made D1 seem very easy compared to D2, and C1 and C2 where so simple compared to FP1. If you enjoy maths and enjoy learning it, then definitely keep up FM! But if you would be able to spend more time on doing better in your other subjects, it might be worth dropping it. Hope it all goes ok!
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jj.repinec
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(Original post by Kvothe the Arcane)
AS Further Maths does not really help with normal A-level maths unless you are taking one of the 2,3 Fp modules at AS which seems unlikely.
For AS Further Maths, I am taking the modules FP1, D1 and S2. Since I know that the farthest I'm going to take Further Maths is up to AS level, do you think I should drop it. Because i've done tests in FP1 as I've had poorer results then i expected while i done good at maths.
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iPhone•
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you could use it to cover one of ur grades if u don't meet ur requirements
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jj.repinec
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(Original post by TobyReichelt)
On the contrary Kvothe, I found that the skills I developed in further maths benefitted me within regular maths. Notation, presentation, problem-solving, and a skill to realise what is happening within a question as opposed to just being told. Playing around with maths makes me understand maths, and equally enough within physics I have found that I apply mathematical skills gained in further maths.

Now, I can't vouch for biology or chemistry, as I take neither. But all the sciences require a set of good maths skills. So, I would conclude that developing good mathematical ability helps one in all sciences.

But that's just my opinion.

Others have not shared this, as they find that further maths only helps them in further maths. It's different from person to person, really.
Thank you for sharing your opinion to help me consider. The skills you've mentioned are general skills that you have gained from further maths. Do you think there was knowledge that you gained from further maths that helped with maths.
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jj.repinec
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(Original post by iPhone•)
you could use it to cover one of ur grades if u don't meet ur requirements
That is a good suggestion, however the problem is that further maths has been the weakest subject out of my four so I don't think that happens. The only thing i think it's going to do is bring down the average of all my grades. On this basis, do you think i should drop this because the only benefit i see of continuing it is that it helps with normal maths ( but i'm starting to learn from other users comments that this is not really the case and that it is not really a benefit after all).
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jj.repinec
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(Original post by ksma1999)
If you think that by dropping FM you could do better in your other subjects I would 100% drop it. If it's not going to help you get into uni and may actually mean that you do worse in the subjects that will (you'll have less time for them) then there is no point. However, I do think that FM made me better at single maths, not really in any specific area (except maybe at using the discriminant in FP1/C1&2), but it definitely improved my general algebraic skills and mathematical ability. It made D1 seem very easy compared to D2, and C1 and C2 where so simple compared to FP1. If you enjoy maths and enjoy learning it, then definitely keep up FM! But if you would be able to spend more time on doing better in your other subjects, it might be worth dropping it. Hope it all goes ok!
Im nearly finished with FP1 right now ( last two topics) and it seems as though that knowledge from C1 and C2 is required to do some of the topics such as differentiation for newton raphson method. Also i'm going to do D1 module for AS further maths and I'm definitely going to only do Further Maths for AS level. On this basis do i really need to carry it on. Because the only benefit that is making me continuing this subject is turning out to not really be a benefit after all.
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(Original post by jj.repinec)
That is a good suggestion, however the problem is that further maths has been the weakest subject out of my four so I don't think that happens. The only thing i think it's going to do is bring down the average of all my grades. On this basis, do you think i should drop this because the only benefit i see of continuing it is that it helps with normal maths ( but i'm starting to learn from other users comments that this is not really the case and that it is not really a benefit after all).
Yes then drop it
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Kvothe the Arcane
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(Original post by jj.repinec)
For AS Further Maths, I am taking the modules FP1, D1 and S2. Since I know that the farthest I'm going to take Further Maths is up to AS level, do you think I should drop it. Because i've done tests in FP1 as I've had poorer results then i expected while i done good at maths.
I can't tell you whether or not you should drop it.

But Fp1, D1 and S2 is largely new material and won't really reinforce what you study in the basic A-level in any way. Personally, I'd continue with all 3 in your situation as I enjoyed the subjects at A-level but you need to weigh up your workload. You say 3 A-levels are sufficient. Well then, there is no harm in dropping FM. But it is up to you. Do you enjoy it?
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jj.repinec
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(Original post by Kvothe the Arcane)
I can't tell you whether or not you should drop it.

But Fp1, D1 and S2 is largely new material and won't really reinforce what you study in the basic A-level in any way. Personally, I'd continue with all 3 in your situation as I enjoyed the subjects at A-level but you need to weigh up your workload. You say 3 A-levels are sufficient. Well then, there is no harm in dropping FM. But it is up to you. Do you enjoy it?
I would say that i fairly enjoy it. But there are times where i can be really confused during Further Maths and the workload is so much more compared to my other subjects. However before my mini test, i actually thought that i understood everything that i learnt so far (and that i was going to do good) until i done the mini test and realised how hard it was because there were exam questions that were set out in a different way that were much harder than the ones in the textbook. As you've said if FP1, D1 and S2 don't reinforce a level maths, is there really any point in me doing it because that's been the only reason for why I've been holding onto it ( but now i'm realising it is not actually even a proper reason since it's not actually true as stated by users such as yourself and others that I've asked).
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TobyReichelt
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(Original post by jj.repinec)
Thank you for sharing your opinion to help me consider. The skills you've mentioned are general skills that you have gained from further maths. Do you think there was knowledge that you gained from further maths that helped with maths.
Yes, as a matter of fact. Although technically not in the specification, being able to solve simultaneous equations using matrices is incredibly useful. It is fast, and if you want an answer, then it is the best way to go. So you could use matrices to solve the simultaneous equation first if you think the other processes are too hard/too fiddly.

Also knowing about complex numbers and the root of negative unity helped me with sketches and graphs within Core 1/2.
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jj.repinec
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(Original post by TobyReichelt)
Yes, as a matter of fact. Although technically not in the specification, being able to solve simultaneous equations using matrices is incredibly useful. It is fast, and if you want an answer, then it is the best way to go. So you could use matrices to solve the simultaneous equation first if you think the other processes are too hard/too fiddly.

Also knowing about complex numbers and the root of negative unity helped me with sketches and graphs within Core 1/2.
I've also learned about how matrices are used to solve simultaneous equations but my teacher told me that it can't be used in C1 or C2 (only in Further Maths). I have learned the entire topic of matrices and complex numbers so I will still have that knowledge if i drop it. If the ones that you've said are the only ones then should I drop Further Maths (or is there stuff in D1 and S2 that might be helpful as well).
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sue99
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(Original post by jj.repinec)
I am in Year 12 (doing first year of new a level or as level) and have chosen the subjects Biology, Chemistry, Maths and Further Maths. As I am looking to study medicine I found out through the university requirements that a fourth subject does not need to be done at AS level. Therefore I'm in a big dilemma on whether to drop Further maths or not. The only benefit I see of choosing to continue is that my headteacher has told me that Further Maths helps with A level Maths (or AS level maths) and apparently makes it easier. But i want to know if does it really help with normal maths and how much? It would be really helpful if you told me what specific topics it would help in as well. Is it really worth to continue the subject?
Thank you
I think your headteacher's wrong there; it may well depend on your exam board. I did Maths and Further Maths last year, and doing just Maths this year. Trust me, AS Further Maths does not help with AS or A level maths at all.
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jj.repinec
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(Original post by sue99)
I think your headteacher's wrong there; it may well depend on your exam board. I did Maths and Further Maths last year, and doing just Maths this year. Trust me, AS Further Maths does not help with AS or A level maths at all.
I'm doing Edexcel Maths and Further Maths. Do you think that makes a difference?
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sue99
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(Original post by jj.repinec)
I'm doing Edexcel Maths and Further Maths. Do you think that makes a difference?
Hm I think in all cases, Further Maths doesn't necessarily help with Maths, but Maths does help with Further Maths to a certain extent do AS Further Maths if you wish, but I found that it consumed a lot of my time, which meant that I couldn't do well on my other subjects, and I didn't even end up doing well on AS Further Maths anyway. I guess it also depends on which other subjects you do, and whether or not they are demanding
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