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GCSE Mathematics

A GCSE in mathematics is a basic entry requirement for most university courses and employment opportunities.

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The GCSE in mathematics is designed to enable students to:

  • Develop fluent knowledge, skills and understanding of mathematical methods and concepts
  • Acquire, select and apply mathematical techniques to solve problems
  • Reason mathematically, make deductions and inferences and draw conclusions
  • Comprehend, interpret and communicate mathematical information in a variety of forms appropriate to the information and context

Entry Requirements

The qualification builds on the content, knowledge and skills developed in the Key Stage 3 Programme of Study (ages 11–14) or international equivalences for Mathematics.

Course Content

The Edexcel International GCSE Mathematics (9-1) course covers the following topic areas:

  • Number
  • Algebra
  • Geometry
  • Statistics

Where does it lead?

An IGCSE in Mathematics is a basic entry requirement for most university courses and employment opportunities. Students can progress from this qualification to:

  • The GCE Advanced Subsidiary (AS) and Advanced Level in Mathematics, Further Mathematics and Pure Mathematics
  • Other equivalent, Level 3 Mathematics qualifications
  • Further study in other areas where mathematics is required including the physical and social sciences which rely heavily on the content covered in the mathematics syllabus
  • Other further training or employment where numerate skills and knowledge are required


Foundation or Higher level

Students will be assessed at either Foundation or Higher level depending on their ability in the subject.

  • Foundation Tier (Grade 5-1)
  • Higher Tier (Grade 9-4)

Students will sit two externally assessed examinations at the end of their course; both with the use of a calculator and formulae sheet included with each exam.

Paper 1 (4MA1/1F or 1H): 2 hours
Paper 2 (4MA1/2F or 2H): 2 hours

The total number of marks for each paper is 100. Each paper is 50% of the total International GCSE. There will be approximately 40% of questions targeted at grades 5 and 4, across papers 1F, 1H, 2F and 2H to aid standardisation and comparability of awards between tiers.


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