IB Mathematical Studies
Mathematics is a tool we use to understand and interpret our world. It is the language used to describe patterns and solve quantitative problems in fields ranging from art and graphic design to science and engineering. It also develops creativity and higher order thinking skills. Because the level of mathematical thinking and problem solving needed in the workplace and in the world continues to increase, those who understand mathematics will have opportunities others do not. Mathematical competence opens doors to productive futures, and the IB Math Studies program is one of the courses where students gain such competence. Mathematical Studies, available as a standard level (SL) subject only, caters to students with varied backgrounds and abilities. Students embarking on this course need to be equipped with fundamental skills and a rudimentary knowledge of basic processes. The nature of mathematical studies is such that it concentrates on mathematics which can be applied to contexts related as far as possible to other curriculum subjects, to common general world occurrences and to topics that relate to home, work and leisure situations. The Internal Assessment project provides an opportunity for the student to undertake an investigation of a mathematical nature in the context of another subject in the curriculum, a hobby or interest of his/her choice using skills learned before and during the mathematical studies course.
Mathematics [SL] is for students who already possess knowledge of basic mathematical concepts and who are equipped with the skills needed to apply simple mathematical techniques correctly. Mathematics SL prepares students for future studies in fields such as engineering, medicine, chemistry or business studies. The intention is to introduce students to these mathematical concepts in an understandable and coherent manner, rather than insisting on mathematical rigour. Whenever possible students should apply the mathematical knowledge they have acquired to solve realistic problems, set in an appropriate context.
The aims of the course are to enable students to:
- Develop an appreciation of the multicultural and historical perspectives of mathematics
- Develop an enjoyment of mathematics
- Communicate mathematically clearly and confidently
- Develop problem solving skills
- Develop mathematical knowledge and skills and use these in real life
The course is a rigorous two year program designed for students with a good mathematical background and who have done well in their IGCSE Mathematics. The majority of these students will be expecting to include mathematics as a major component of their university studies, within courses such as mathematics, physics, engineering, medicine and technology.
The core components of the higher level course are algebra, functions and equations, circular function and trigonometry, matrices, vectors, statistics and probability and calculus.
Our students will be covering the option series and differential equations.
The nature of the course focuses on developing the important mathematical concepts to help students comprehend rationally and thoroughly. There is a much greater emphasis on proof than in any of the other mathematics courses and students are encouraged to apply their knowledge to solving problems in a variety of ways and in real life applications. Graphical calculators, autograph and other relevant computer software will be used to assist in this aim.
The portfolio, counts to 20% of the final grade and consists of two pieces of work. This is based on different areas of the syllabus, representing an investigation and a modeling task.
The students will be involved in practicing a variety of mathematical symbols, which are accepted internationally. All the mathematical symbols and notations will be covered extensively. Students will be exposed to the historical mathematics, which was contributed to internationally. Examples of teachable historical mathematics are the Babylonian contribution of place value, Pascal’s triangle and the Chinese role to negative numbers and the decimal system.