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How do I show wider interest in maths?

Cambridge specifically really emphasise that they want someone who has a passion for the subject. Although I am genuinely passionate about maths, I was wondering if anyone had suggestions about what I can do over the summer (i.e work experience) or just in general to show this. Thanks :smile:
Hi, I don’t have much interest in maths myself, but I came across your post and might have a suggestion for you.

Back when I was in school, A Level students had an opportunity through the Welsh BAC subject to help out in year 7/8/9 classrooms in subjects of their choice and to mentor students during our free lessons. I did this for a Biology class, and I was thinking that doing this for a Maths class could show a wider interest in the subject? Maybe you could ask the teachers at your school if you could volunteer to help out/mentor students in the maths classes of younger school years? It could show that you’re passionate about maths as you’re helping others to do it. Just a thought!

Any masterclasses, extra online (can be free!) courses, or seminars/webinars you do could also be helpful for showing wider interest. Any maths-related extra-curricular activity really!

In terms of work experience, if you can’t find a maths-related job, I wouldn’t worry. It’s important that you get some sort of work experience as, most of the time, it’s not the work you’ve done but the skills you’ve developed and what you’ve learnt from it.

Hope this helps and good luck with your application to Cambridge!
Reply 2
Original post by carawynjones
Hi, I don’t have much interest in maths myself, but I came across your post and might have a suggestion for you.
Back when I was in school, A Level students had an opportunity through the Welsh BAC subject to help out in year 7/8/9 classrooms in subjects of their choice and to mentor students during our free lessons. I did this for a Biology class, and I was thinking that doing this for a Maths class could show a wider interest in the subject? Maybe you could ask the teachers at your school if you could volunteer to help out/mentor students in the maths classes of younger school years? It could show that you’re passionate about maths as you’re helping others to do it. Just a thought!
Any masterclasses, extra online (can be free!) courses, or seminars/webinars you do could also be helpful for showing wider interest. Any maths-related extra-curricular activity really!
In terms of work experience, if you can’t find a maths-related job, I wouldn’t worry. It’s important that you get some sort of work experience as, most of the time, it’s not the work you’ve done but the skills you’ve developed and what you’ve learnt from it.
Hope this helps and good luck with your application to Cambridge!


Thank you this is really helpful. I’ve worked with children for about 400+ hours so far so asking my school to let me mentor shouldn’t be too hard haha. I’ll definitely follow up on that thank you for your advice.
Original post by Rory L
Cambridge specifically really emphasise that they want someone who has a passion for the subject. Although I am genuinely passionate about maths, I was wondering if anyone had suggestions about what I can do over the summer (i.e work experience) or just in general to show this. Thanks :smile:

Cambridge Maths student here who does a lot of outreach work. You don't really need work experience at all. I don't know of anyone here who had any. It's not like you can do much groundbreaking Mathematical research with only A-Level Maths (and if you can, you're probably on your way to greatness).

Showing your passion for Maths can just be as simple as doing lots of it: whether that's practicing STEP papers in your spare time or just doing Maths questions because you find them interesting. Maths as a subject has a wide disparity of access to supercurriculars and they are aware of that, so you don't need to spend loads of money or use connections to do anything doing Maths in your own time is fine.
Reply 4
Original post by melancollege
Cambridge Maths student here who does a lot of outreach work. You don't really need work experience at all. I don't know of anyone here who had any. It's not like you can do much groundbreaking Mathematical research with only A-Level Maths (and if you can, you're probably on your way to greatness).
Showing your passion for Maths can just be as simple as doing lots of it: whether that's practicing STEP papers in your spare time or just doing Maths questions because you find them interesting. Maths as a subject has a wide disparity of access to supercurriculars and they are aware of that, so you don't need to spend loads of money or use connections to do anything doing Maths in your own time is fine.


Thank you this made me a bit less worried about it. :smile:
Original post by Rory L
Cambridge specifically really emphasise that they want someone who has a passion for the subject. Although I am genuinely passionate about maths, I was wondering if anyone had suggestions about what I can do over the summer (i.e work experience) or just in general to show this. Thanks :smile:

Not over summer but you can do the UKMT maths challenges/olympiads. Read higehr level popular maths books e.g. Music of The Primes, and in year 12 you could do the Isaac physics which has a large maths content. There are also maths competitions such as the Liverpool maths challenges.
Reply 6
Original post by Anonymous
Not over summer but you can do the UKMT maths challenges/olympiads. Read higehr level popular maths books e.g. Music of The Primes, and in year 12 you could do the Isaac physics which has a large maths content. There are also maths competitions such as the Liverpool maths challenges.


Thank you I’ll make sure to look into the books :smile:
Reply 7
Original post by Rory L
Cambridge specifically really emphasise that they want someone who has a passion for the subject. Although I am genuinely passionate about maths, I was wondering if anyone had suggestions about what I can do over the summer (i.e work experience) or just in general to show this. Thanks :smile:

You can read up on the subject, i really recommend attending some uni-level math lectures, you can find youtube videos and some resources online that correlate with any maths topics you're interested. I initially listened to a podcast about mathematical history and from that I found a topic I was interested in and did some further reading and practise.

I also recommend any math camps/competitions and summer school (which rn, is too late to apply for in 2024 summer)... It can show you have an active interest. Remember on your PS/equivalent, you have to link it to how it shows you have an interest and how you've challenged yourself outside the curriculum.

There's so many mathematical concepts out there, and so many that are used in interesting ways, that may also link to career aspects or something else you already have an interest. If you can make a unique link between them, then you've really set yourself apart from the crowd.

Hope this helps :smile:
Reply 8
Original post by 1ta_dx
You can read up on the subject, i really recommend attending some uni-level math lectures, you can find youtube videos and some resources online that correlate with any maths topics you're interested. I initially listened to a podcast about mathematical history and from that I found a topic I was interested in and did some further reading and practise.
I also recommend any math camps/competitions and summer school (which rn, is too late to apply for in 2024 summer)... It can show you have an active interest. Remember on your PS/equivalent, you have to link it to how it shows you have an interest and how you've challenged yourself outside the curriculum.
There's so many mathematical concepts out there, and so many that are used in interesting ways, that may also link to career aspects or something else you already have an interest. If you can make a unique link between them, then you've really set yourself apart from the crowd.
Hope this helps :smile:


Thank you this was really helpful :smile:

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