Why choose this specification? Qualifications

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Why AQA Why choose this specification??

AQA Level 2 Certificate in Further Maths is designed to stretch and challenge high achieving mathematicians. It is the equivalent to a full GCSE course, but it doesn't cover the full Key Skills 4 (KS4) programme of study, which still must be covered.

It is ideal for students who have either secured a top GCSE grade by taking the qualification early, or for adding additional stretching content into the KS4 teaching programme, with a view to taking GCSE and the Level 2 Certificate at the end of Year 11.

Students producing an outstanding performance are rewarded with a grade above A*, getting an "A* with distinction", which is unique to this qualification.

It complements GCSE Maths by encouraging students' higher Mathematical skills, particularly algebraic reasoning, but doesn't infringe upon AS Level Maths. Students who have GCSE Maths and AQA Level 2 Certificate in Further Maths can move onto the deeper material of AS and A2 Level Maths and Sciences knowing they will be fully stretched and challenged.

AQA Level 2 Certificate in Further Mathematics emphasises higher order technical proficiencies, problem solving skills and rigorous argument. Students are introduced to calculus and matrices, and develop further their skills in Trigonometry, graphs and functions.

AQA Level 2 Certificate in Further Maths is an untiered qualification for students who either have or are predicted to achieve Grades A or A* at GCSE, and are likely to progress to A-level Maths and Further Maths.

What teachers like about AQA Level 2 Certificate in Further Maths

Teachers tell us that they like the specification because:

  • it is flexible – it can be taught over one or two years alongside or following early entry GCSE Mathematics
  • it offers an 'A* with distinction' grade to challenge students further
  • students are engaged with advanced topics like Calculus, Algebra, Geometry and Matrices
  • students are introduced to AS topics, but they don't overlap
  • it encourages them to get the best out of their students
  • it fills a gap between GCSE and A-level.

What students like about AQA Level 2 Certificate in Further Maths

Teachers tell us that their students like:

  • studying Maths in more depth and gaining a better understanding of how to go about problem solving in Maths
  • tackling advanced concepts and topics like Calculus and Matrices without having to wait until AS Level
  • knowing that their mathematical abilities are being recognised and reinforced
  • the purpose it gives them in doing extra study which earns them an extra qualification
  • the possibility of achieving an 'A*with distinction' grade
  • the basis it gives for higher study of Maths and Science.

Skills students will develop with this specification

This specification will help students to develop their:

  • higher order knowledge and understanding of mathematical principles
  • experience of advanced Mathematics, such as Calculus
  • skills in Trigonometry, functions and graphs further
  • ability to select, apply and link mathematical techniques and methods to solve challenging and non-routine problems
  • independent mathematical reasoning and argument.


AQA offers teachers a wide variety of support for this specification. This includes:

  • advice and guidance from the Maths Subject Team and regional Maths advisers
  • online resources including assessment guidance, route maps and model answers
  • worksheets designed to help support the teaching of non-GCSE topics
  • printed and online copy of the specification
  • specimen question papers and mark schemes
  • email updates from our Maths team
  • enhanced results analysis (ERA) to compare your results with other schools and colleges.

The FMSP (Further Mathematics Support Programme funded by the Department for Education) has embraced the qualification as providing excellent A-level preparation. It has provided a section of its integral resources to support the course. The programme is free for teachers to access, thanks to sponsorship from AQA.

Career opportunities and further studies

Throughout the AQA Level 2 Certificate in Further Maths, students are stretched and challenged to explore Mathematics more deeply and rigorously. The understanding of the fundamentals of Maths and problem-solving skills are useful across all kinds of disciplines and careers.

AQA Level 2 Certificate in Further Maths could lead on to further study in Maths, Further Maths, Pure Maths or Statistics at A-level, and/or other related subjects such as Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Electronics, Psychology, Environmental Studies or Applied Science.

Examination series and re-sits

This specification is designed to be taken over a one or two-year course of study with all assessment at the end of the course. Examinations and certification for this specification are available in June.

Candidates can re-sit the qualification as many times as they wish, but they must re-sit all papers each time.

Overlap with other qualifications

There are no overlaps with any other qualifications.

Private candidates

This specification is available to private candidates. For more information, please see our Private candidates page.