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The main aim of S3 mathematics is to make further progress on the topics covered in S1 and S2 and to develop some of the skills required for success in National courses in S4.



Mathematics can be interesting and useful.   Learning mathematics develops logical reasoning, analysis, problem-solving skills, creativity, and the ability to think in abstract ways. It uses a universal language of numbers and symbols, which allows us to communicate ideas in a concise, unambiguous and rigorous way.  

We have broad banded setting in S3 maths, so not all classes are covering the same programme of work.  Topics covered include Algebra, Geometry, Trigonometry and Statistics, studied to a greater or lesser extent depending on ability and prior attainment.  Pupils will use a variety of textbooks and online resources 


Everything you need to know before selecting this course


Regular homework is given in S3 maths, either working from a textbook, homework booklet or an online resource such as 

How you will be assessed

Classes are assessed termly in S3, usually in the form of class tests.  Results are used to check progress and help decide presentation levels for S4.   There is a final assessment in April, which is held in the assembly hall in order to provide a similar experience to National 5 exams in S4. 


Everything you need to know about future pathways from this course


There are many careers in which mathematics is used and the skills developed in the study of maths are highly desirable, including: 


  • Accountancy 

  • Electrical, Civil & Mechanical Engineering 

  • Building Trade 

  • Banking, Pensions & Finance 

  • Computer Games Development 

  • Air Traffic Control 

  • Nursing 

  • Sport & Leisure 

S4 and beyond

The main decision to be made at the end of S3 is whether pupils are presented for the N5 Maths qualification or N4/5 Applications Maths.  Many pupils choose the Applications route as they find the topics covered (eg personal finance, numeracy, statistics) more relevant for their future plans.  We now offer both Higher Maths and Higher Applications Maths in S5/6.


Information from pupils who have studied this course as to how they feel it was.

Tasha - S3

It feels very boring and strict at the start but it’s not actually that bad.  Some of the topics are quite hard like Pi and Area/Volume of shapes but some are easier like Fractions and Statistics.  There’s quite a lot of homework but I wouldn’t stress about that. Can be fun at times. 


James - S3

S3 has been good in maths. It is not too much more difficult than S2 and you don’t get too much homework if you work hard in class. 

Student Behind the Books
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