General administration

You can find information about all aspects of administration, as well as all the forms you need, at

Entries and codes

You only need to make one entry for each qualification – this will cover all the question papers and certification.

Every specification is given a national discount (classification) code by the Department for Education (DfE), which indicates its subject area.

If a student takes two specifications with the same discount code, Further and Higher Education providers are likely to take the view that they have only achieved one of the two qualifications. Please check this before your students start their course.

Qualification title Option AQA entry code DfE discount code
AQA Level 3 Certificate Mathematical Studies with Statistical techniques



AQA Level 3 Certificate Mathematical Studies with Critical path and risk analysis



AQA Level 3 Certificate Mathematical Studies with Graphical techniques



This specification complies with Ofqual's General Conditions of Recognition and all relevant regulatory documents.

The Ofqual qualification accreditation number (QAN) is 601/4945/0

Overlaps with other qualifications

There is some overlap between this specification and AQA's GCSE Mathematics, AQA's GCSE Statistics and with AQA's Functional Skills qualifications in Mathematics at Level 1 and Level 2. Some overlap also exists with this specification and AQA's Level 2 Certificate in Further Mathematics and with AQA's suite of Free-Standing Mathematics Qualifications (FSMQs).

Awarding grades and reporting results

The Level 3 Certificate qualification will be graded on a five-point scale: A, B, C, D and E.

Students who fail to reach the minimum standard for grade E will be recorded as U (unclassified) and will not receive a qualification certificate.

Re-sits and shelf life

Students can re-sit the qualification as many times as they wish, within the shelf life of the qualification.

Previous learning and prerequisites

Mathematics is, inherently, a sequential subject. There is a progression of material through all levels at which the subject is studied.

It is expected that students engaging on a course of study leading to this qualification will have already achieved a 'good' pass (currently grade C or above) in GCSE mathematics or an equivalent level 1/2 qualification.

Hence, it is assumed that all students will have competence and confidence in the content presented in standard type in the Department for Education's GCSE mathematics content and assessment objectives document. This is the content listed as basic foundation content in the AQA GCSE mathematics specification (8300) for exams from 2017 onwards. Students will make use of this content when addressing problems within the assessment of this specification but this content is not explicitly set out in this specification. All other content required for this specification is listed in section 3 of this specification.

Access to assessment: diversity and inclusion

General qualifications are designed to prepare students for a wide range of occupations and further study. Therefore our qualifications must assess a wide range of competences.

The subject criteria have been assessed to see if any of the skills or knowledge required present any possible difficulty to any students, whatever their ethnic background, religion, sex, age, disability or sexuality. If any difficulties were encountered, the criteria were reviewed again to make sure that tests of specific competences were only included if they were important to the subject.

As members of the Joint Council for Qualifications (JCQ) we participate in the production of the JCQ document Access Arrangements and Reasonable Adjustments: General and Vocational qualifications. We follow these guidelines when assessing the needs of individual students who may require an access arrangement or reasonable adjustment. This document is published on the JCQ website at

Students with disabilities and special needs

We can make arrangements for disabled students and students with special needs to help them access the assessments, as long as the competences being tested are not changed. Access arrangements must be agreed before the assessment. For example, a Braille paper would be a reasonable adjustment for a Braille reader but not for a student who does not read Braille.

We are required by the Equality Act 2010 to make reasonable adjustments to remove or lessen any disadvantage that affects a disabled student.

If you have students who need access arrangements or reasonable adjustments, you can apply using the Access arrangements online service at

Special consideration

We can give special consideration to students who have been disadvantaged at the time of the assessment through no fault of their own – for example a temporary illness, injury or serious problem such as the death of a relative. We can only do this after the assessment.

Your exams officer should apply online for special consideration at

For more information and advice about access arrangements, reasonable adjustments and special consideration please see or email

Working with AQA for the first time

If your school or college has not previously offered any AQA specification, you need to register as an AQA centre to offer our specifications to your students. Find out how at

If your school or college is new to this specification, please let us know by completing an Intention to enter form. The easiest way to do this is via e-AQA at

Private candidates

A private candidate is someone who enters for exams through an AQA-approved school or college but is not enrolled as a student there.

If you are a private candidate you may be self-taught, home-schooled or have private tuition, either with a tutor or through a distance learning organisation. You must be based in the UK.

If you have any queries as a private candidate, you can:

Materials for use in the examination

For all question papers, students are expected to write in black pen and have mathematical instruments available for use in the exam. These instruments are defined as:

  • pencil (for use in diagrams only - no colour pencils)
  • ruler
  • pair of compasses
  • protractor

Calculators are allowed in all papers in this specification. The rules are the same as for any other examination – please see the JCQ document Instructions for Conducting Examinations for further details.

Most models of scientific or graphics calculator are allowed. However, calculators that feature a 'Computer Algebra System' (CAS) are not allowed. It is usually clear from the manufacturer's specifications whether a model has this feature.

It is expected that students are familiar with the use of a scientific calculator or a graphics calculator. They should also use a scientific calculator when studying this specification and sitting its exams.

Preliminary Materials will be available in advance of the examination via eAQA, for issue from 1 March each year. A clean copy of the Preliminary Material will be provided as an insert to the examination paper. Students must not take a copy of their pre-release Preliminary Material into the examination room.

A formulae sheet will be provided for use with all Mathematical Studies exams.

A statistical tables sheet will be provided for use with paper 2A only.