Hi, I’m really interested in maths, I am in year 12 at the moment. I did IGCSE maths for GCSE and got a 9 (I scored above 90% in maths). I really want to study maths at university and I am doing A level maths and further maths at the moment.

I am doing the Senior Maths Challenge next week and wanted some advice. Although I am good at maths and score quite well usually, I’m not very good at the UKMT maths challenges. The most I’ve gotten is a silver and even that at boundary level. I have heard that getting gold in SMC is quite a good achievement especially if you want to go into maths but I seem to struggle with these types of challenges.. does anyone have any tips for getting gold? In particular anything I should know e.g. finding out the square root of a number hack etc like those types of valuable little tricks which I can pick up on and try to use when needed?

Please advise!

I am doing the Senior Maths Challenge next week and wanted some advice. Although I am good at maths and score quite well usually, I’m not very good at the UKMT maths challenges. The most I’ve gotten is a silver and even that at boundary level. I have heard that getting gold in SMC is quite a good achievement especially if you want to go into maths but I seem to struggle with these types of challenges.. does anyone have any tips for getting gold? In particular anything I should know e.g. finding out the square root of a number hack etc like those types of valuable little tricks which I can pick up on and try to use when needed?

Please advise!

Original post by PlsAnsMyQuestion

Hi, I’m really interested in maths, I am in year 12 at the moment. I did IGCSE maths for GCSE and got a 9 (I scored above 90% in maths). I really want to study maths at university and I am doing A level maths and further maths at the moment.

I am doing the Senior Maths Challenge next week and wanted some advice. Although I am good at maths and score quite well usually, I’m not very good at the UKMT maths challenges. The most I’ve gotten is a silver and even that at boundary level. I have heard that getting gold in SMC is quite a good achievement especially if you want to go into maths but I seem to struggle with these types of challenges.. does anyone have any tips for getting gold? In particular anything I should know e.g. finding out the square root of a number hack etc like those types of valuable little tricks which I can pick up on and try to use when needed?

Please advise!

I am doing the Senior Maths Challenge next week and wanted some advice. Although I am good at maths and score quite well usually, I’m not very good at the UKMT maths challenges. The most I’ve gotten is a silver and even that at boundary level. I have heard that getting gold in SMC is quite a good achievement especially if you want to go into maths but I seem to struggle with these types of challenges.. does anyone have any tips for getting gold? In particular anything I should know e.g. finding out the square root of a number hack etc like those types of valuable little tricks which I can pick up on and try to use when needed?

Please advise!

Honestly, youre better off just doing a few papers and thinking carefully about the model solutions and if necessary doing some of the supplementary questions for ones you get wrong / cant do (theyre in the extended solutions). You can access the papers/solutions from the ukmt web or online from drfrost. There are some smc slides at drfrost, but theyre too comprehensive (as theyre for bmo/mat/step as well) to cover in a week. If youre unsure about any questions/solutions, just post here.

Arguably the most useful thing to practice is a bit of problem solving, rather than trying to memorise a list of math tricks, so can you simplify the problem, transform it, spot magic numbers, work back from the answers, sketch it, ....

Its worth putting in a bit of practice, but honestly in a week youre unlikely to improve dramatically. Though if you can learn a few things, its not wasted. There isnt a great correlation between smc and maths a level so getting silver is ok. If youre thinking of doing an admission exam like mat/tmua, or just want to improve your background, then maybe put a bit of regular practice in for a few months, but concentrate on your a levels.

(edited 2 weeks ago)

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can someone please explain what principle domain is and why the answer is a not c?Maths

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