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#1

(Based on Sir Cumference's 2019 post which was based on r_gup's 2018 post which was based on previous year's posts. Any recommendations for stuff to be added to this post are welcome!)

If you need help with any MAT questions then please post the question in this thread (or link to it) along with your full working and explain where you're stuck.

Key Dates:

Registration deadline : 15th October 2020
MAT exam date : 4th November 2020
Interview shortlist decisions (for Oxford) : November 2020
Offer decisions (for Oxford) : January 2021

It's worth studying the second year single pure content before beginning MAT preparation for a better understanding of the concepts behind trigonometry/calculus. However, as noted in the syllabus, the only 100% necessary part of this for the MAT is sequences and series

Start with the earliest papers you can find and ideally try and complete them all by the exam. The papers before 2007 are of an older style and do not follow the same specification as current papers but are good practice nonetheless. The papers up to 2017 are also now of an old specification, however will be more similar to our specification than the older ones.

The earlier papers are somewhat easier than current papers so be careful to not become complacent when scoring highly on early papers

Aim to do as many past papers as possible as timed mocks, exam technique is essential to success in the MAT

Note the following changes of the specification from 2018: In order to reflect the new syllabus of AS-level Mathematics, we will be removing the following topics from the syllabus: the remainder theorem, radians, the trapezium rule. We will be adding the following topics to the syllabus: combinations and binomial probabilities, derivative of , differentiation from first principles, graphs of loga(x).

Resources:

Exam Syllabus
MAT/AEA/STEP Past Papers
Official Webpage
MAT Preparation Powerpoint
MAT Section B Tips PDF
MAT 1992-1995 Solutions
MAT 1996-2006 Solutions

Exam Information/Layout:

The exam is 150 minutes (2 hours 30 minutes) long

There are 5 specific questions to be completed depending on your course

The first question consists of 10 multiple choice questions all worth 4 marks each

All answers to questions are submitted on plain paper

Formulae sheets and calculators are not permitted

Compasses are permitted

Graph Sketching:
Spoiler:
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Find the asymptotes of the curve

Determine if and where the curve intercepts the coordinate axis

Determine if there exist turning points/points of inflection for the curve

Find the limits (if they exist) of the curve

Things to Look for:

Spoiler:
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Opportunities to use the discriminant conditions for a quadratic equation, for example:

Any equation representing the x or y coordinate of the point of intersection of a tangent to a curve must have one repeat real root:
therefore b^2 - 4ac = 0

It is also worth noting that the gradient of the tangent and the curve at the above point are the same

The shortest distance between a point and a line is found by taking the normal to the line which passes through the point

When asked to find the correct graph for a function, try substituting important values into the function to rule out possibilities. For example, 2013 Q1D.

Be aware of useful inequalities:
Spoiler:
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(a-b)^2 \geq 0 \Rightarrow a^2 + b^2 \geq 2ab

Something important:
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Please register for the MAT as soon as possible because many centres have a limited number of seats and stop accepting applications for the MAT.

Some Tags:
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1
1 month ago
#2
Deffo started to prepare too late
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#3
(Original post by jduxie4414)
Deffo started to prepare too late
This thread took AGES to make 😂
No you didn't 😂 Watch how you get the first offer, I'm sure you started revision for the MAT before many others!
1
1 month ago
#4
Has anybody found any good recourses that aren't past papers?
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#5
(Original post by Swedinq)
Has anybody found any good recourses that aren't past papers?
I managed to find this guidebook , not sure how much of use it will be for you
https://stepmaths.co.uk/wp-content/u...uidebook-2.pdf
(do let me know if the link works ).
0
1 month ago
#6
(Original post by builderxyz)
I managed to find this guidebook , not sure how much of use it will be for you
https://stepmaths.co.uk/wp-content/u...uidebook-2.pdf
(do let me know if the link works ).
Just to comment on something in the link:
each of the 10 parts of Question 1 is worth 4 marks and the other 4 questions you must answer are 15 each. You are advised to divide your time according to how many marks each question is worth.
I don't think this is terribly good advice. Although there are 40 marks available in Q1, you would expect to get 8 marks just by guessing. So a more rational division of time would be to consider Q1 as being worth 32 marks and the reset being worth 60.

In practice it's more nuanced than that, but in my experience, people struggling for time in the exam are probably spending too long on the multiple choice section.
2
#7
(Original post by DFranklin)
Just to comment on something in the link:

I don't think this is terribly good advice. Although there are 40 marks available in Q1, you would expect to get 8 marks just by guessing. So a more rational division of time would be to consider Q1 as being worth 32 marks and the reset being worth 60.

In practice it's more nuanced than that, but in my experience, people struggling for time in the exam are probably spending too long on the multiple choice section.
Good point
0
1 month ago
#8
(Original post by builderxyz)
Good point
Nah, you aim to do an hour for the multiple choice, and an hour and a half for the other 4 questions.
0
1 month ago
#9
(Original post by jduxie4414)
Nah, you aim to do an hour for the multiple choice, and an hour and a half for the other 4 questions.
At the end of the day, it's a personal choice, but I would say that it is unlikely to be the best way of dividing your time.

What I'd *actually* recommend is more along the lines of:

Do a quick pass through of the questions: in 15 minutes you should be able to solve at least 5 questions, and get to a point where you're close to 50/50 on the other questions. At this point your expected score on the MC is 30 out of 40. Then do the long questions, then use any remaining time on the multiple choice (making sure to spare enough time to at least guess on every MC question you couldn't do in the first pass].
2
1 month ago
#10
(Original post by DFranklin)
At the end of the day, it's a personal choice, but I would say that it is unlikely to be the best way of dividing your time.

What I'd *actually* recommend is more along the lines of:

Do a quick pass through of the questions: in 15 minutes you should be able to solve at least 5 questions, and get to a point where you're close to 50/50 on the other questions. At this point your expected score on the MC is 30 out of 40. Then do the long questions, then use any remaining time on the multiple choice (making sure to spare enough time to at least guess on every MC question you couldn't do in the first pass].
What do you use to revise? I quite like that plan to be honest.
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#11
UPDATE:
A useful resource:
Dr James Monroe from the University Of Oxford hosts a weekly MAT lives stream which are completely free to attend to.

Spoiler:
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Are you thinking of applying to study Mathematics at university? Every Thursday afternoon, we'll be livestreaming maths problems and discussing problem-solving strategies, with a particular focus on Oxford's Mathematics Admissions Test (MAT). The sessions are free, interactive, and available for everyone.

It is HIGHLY recommended that you attend all these livestreams as they can be extremely beneficial to you. To view information on past livestreams, MAT worksheets and any other information regarding this please visit:
https://www.maths.ox.ac.uk/study-her...mat-livestream
3
1 month ago
#12
(Original post by jduxie4414)
What do you use to revise? I quite like that plan to be honest.
I graduated around 30 years ago.
0
1 month ago
#13
(Original post by builderxyz)
UPDATE:
A useful resource:
Dr James Monroe from the University Of Oxford hosts a weekly MAT lives stream which are completely free to attend to.

Spoiler:
Show
Are you thinking of applying to study Mathematics at university? Every Thursday afternoon, we'll be livestreaming maths problems and discussing problem-solving strategies, with a particular focus on Oxford's Mathematics Admissions Test (MAT). The sessions are free, interactive, and available for everyone.

It is HIGHLY recommended that you attend all these livestreams as they can be extremely beneficial to you. To view information on past livestreams, MAT worksheets and any other information regarding this please visit:
https://www.maths.ox.ac.uk/study-her...mat-livestream
this is a very good resource
1
1 month ago
#14
(Original post by builderxyz)
I managed to find this guidebook , not sure how much of use it will be for you
https://stepmaths.co.uk/wp-content/u...uidebook-2.pdf
(do let me know if the link works ).
The link works great, thanks for posting it!
1
1 month ago
#15
Good luck everyone
3
2 weeks ago
#16
Who's applying for CS? This thread seems very quiet this year!!!!
0
2 weeks ago
#17
(Original post by jduxie4414)
Who's applying for CS? This thread seems very quiet this year!!!!
I’m applying for maths, I agree with you about the quietness though! How are the longer CS questions in the MAT?
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#18

EXERCISE:

As you all may know. The test date is coming close and the early entry deadline has almost passed so please don't forget to send off your UCAS application!

The video below is a workshop on the MAT that Dr James Munro (Admissions Coordinator) recorded to introduce you to the style of questions on the MAT.

Please also find the problems used in the workshop here: http://people.maths.ox.ac.uk/munro/mat/workshop.pdf

As always, if you have any questions then please feel free to ask!
0
2 weeks ago
#19
(Original post by laurawatt)
I’m applying for maths, I agree with you about the quietness though! How are the longer CS questions in the MAT?
I mean, I'm surprised at how much Alice, Bob and Charlie seem to be getting up to! I reckon they'll make an appearance this year too

I think it's hit and miss for me really, I'll either do amazing or hideously! How about you? What's your average score?
0
2 weeks ago
#20
(Original post by laurawatt)
I’m applying for maths, I agree with you about the quietness though! How are the longer CS questions in the MAT?
I mean, I'm surprised at how much Alice, Bob and Charlie seem to be getting up to! I reckon they'll make an appearance this year too

I think it's hit and miss for me really, I'll either do amazing or hideously! How about you? What's your average score?

Nov 4 is coming so fast!
0
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