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Unit information: Introductory Foundations of Mathematics in 2020/21

Please note: you are viewing unit and programme information for a past academic year. Please see the current academic year for up to date information.

Unit name Introductory Foundations of Mathematics
Unit code AFAC10015
Credit points 20
Level of study C/4
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 1 (weeks 1 - 12)
Unit director Dr. John McTague
Open unit status Not open

Students should hold appropriate qualifications in Mathematics at equivalent of QCA level 2, or demonstrate equivalent ability by taking a diagnostic test during the admissions process for the Foundation in Arts and Social Sciences.



School/department Arts Faculty Office
Faculty Faculty of Arts

Description including Unit Aims

This unit provides a first course in calculus to a level equivalent to QCA level 3. It will prepare students on the Foundation in Arts and Social Sciences for progression into degrees in the Schools of Economics and Finance and Accounting. It is suitable for students who have not taken any mathematics qualifications beyond the equivalent of QCA level 2.

Assessment for learning/Formative Assessment

Weekly problem sheets with feedback provided in tutorials [ILOs 1-5]

Intended Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit students will be able to:

  • perform basic algebraic manipulations
  • sum arithmetic and geometric series
  • solve linear, simultaneous linear, and quadratic equations
  • use numerical methods to find areas under curves, etc.
  • use trigonometry
  • differentiate and integrate simple functions and know the physical meaning of the derivative and integral.

Teaching Information

2 x 2 hr seminars per week

Assessment Information

Assessment of learning/Summative Learning

2.5 hour written exam [ILOs 1-5] (100%)

Reading and References

Many textbooks cover the material taught in this unit, for example:

  • Understanding Pure Mathematics, A.J. Sadler and D.W.S. Thorning (Oxford University Press 1995)
  • Olive, J. (2003) Maths: A Student’s Survival Guide

You may also find the following books helpful:

  • Help yourself to algebra, Hugh Neill (Longman 1996)
  • Mind the Gap, bridging the gap between GCSE and AS Maths, Roger Cahalin, Alessandra Desbottes & Suzanne Doyle (Coordination Group Publications 2002)