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#102879 Self-Teaching Advanced Higher Maths

Posted by Amanda H on 06 June 2010 - 10:32 PM in Mathematics

View PostErie, on 02 June 2010 - 01:14 PM, said:

I'll be starting 6th year next week (but not properly until August though) and was wondering whether I'm being realistic in thinking it is possible to self-teach Advanced Higher Maths... Opinions welcomed. I have sat Higher Maths this year (S5).

What do you recommend I do to best prepare for it? What materials will I need for it? Posted Image

Any advice appreciated.

I can't say for sure since I don't know you, how good you are at maths or how disciplined you are, and I'm not going to say it would be impossible. However I would say you should be at least achieving an 'A' for higher and be aware that you will have to put the hours in on your own. Advanced higher maths isn't something that can be learned for the first time the night before.

I'm assuming your school has said this is a possible option, if not speak to them as not all schools are keen on this.

If you are going ahead with it you'll need the 3 maths in action books which cover a unit each as well as past papers. I personally didn't find the scholar books of any help at all. My best resource (even better than textbooks) was my teachers whether asking them a question, using notes they had given in class or homework they gave out.

Pick whichever maths teacher you feel you would be most comfortable going to for help and ask them if they would be willing to talk through areas of the course with you during the year if you were to run into difficulty.

#102615 How to study Higher Maths?

Posted by Amanda H on 08 January 2010 - 02:34 AM in Mathematics

View PostSocksGalore, on 07 January 2010 - 03:43 PM, said:


I'm currently doing my 5 highers at college and I've recently left school (hated it lol). I only done G/F maths, but I'm applying for Chemistry @ Uni this year so I decided to take on a challange and do Higher Maths. At first it was mind boggling; in college you kinda have to take responsiblity for your own learning...which is a nightmare for maths.

I did pretty well on my first NAB, passed all outcomes and only lost 2 marks throughout the whole thing, and they were just silly mistakes. I'm predicted B.

The thing is, I have no clue how to study it. I've tried using my Maths in Action book, and that's just horrid for such a challenging course. I've ordered the HSN PP book + multiple choice serial numbers...they are quite good but I'm ready for past papers yet.

I've bought the Heineman Higher Maths book on amazon. I heard it was good.

So, how do you study for maths? Posted Image

I always went through the whole course topic by topic, made notes on the important info and write an example of each type of question. This shouldn't take too long, it should mainly consist of equations and diagrams with a comment beside them and not huge paragraphs of writing. This is good to then refer to if you need a reminder of how to do a certain question. Just try to keep it neat and make sure what you're writing down is correct. Make sure you understand how to do a question and get help if you don't before writing it in your notes.

Once you understand things it's a case of doing questions to make sure you remember how to do it correctly. With past papers I would do one, mark it and then look through where you went wrong and why. From this you'll know what you need to work more on. I suggest you focus on sorting any problems out (i.e. revisting that section in the textbook) before attempting more past papers only to repeat the same mistake. Although I left past papers till it was time to do prelims and exams just so I didn't find myself repeating the same ones. They're obviously the best way to revise for an exam so I think it's important to leave at least a couple of those to do as prep for the final exam.

I used the Heineman book as well as the Heineman revision book and found those and past papers were the only things I needed.

This is the way I approached it and found it worked but not everyone is the same. If you feel you're getting on ok your own way I wouldn't change things.

Good luck and if you've got any other questions just ask, I've done my fair share of maths. Posted Image

#102471 Best higher books-urgent-

Posted by Amanda H on 15 September 2009 - 08:38 PM in Mathematics

Well I didn't do higher chemistry or biology so I can't help you there, sorry.

For physics I had 'New Higher Physics' by Adrian Watt. Although I found this was the type of book you mentioned you wanted to avoid, it's full of extra stuff that you don't really need. If you're trying to look something up it took forever to find it or some of the stuff you need to know isn't even there. I also had 'Revision notes for Higher Physics', again not great. Can't really recommend a book that you should definitely get. For standard grade I had the physics book from the Success guide which I found good, not sure if the higher version is good or not, they didn't do a higher version when I sat the exam. It might be worth taking a look at it or asking around to see if anyone else has it.

A final tip on revision books in general is just because a certain publisher makes a good book for one subject it doesn't mean their books on other subjects are good. I found this with the Leckie & Leckie books at standard grade, good for maths but not so good for physics. If you had a good book for standard grade, the first book I would try would be the higher book from the same publisher.

As before, I'll say for all subjects it's best to use a variety of resources because it would be rare to find a perfect book for any exam.

#102469 Best higher books-urgent-

Posted by Amanda H on 14 September 2009 - 06:52 PM in Mathematics

When I was doing higher maths I found 'Heinemann Revise for Higher Mathematics' was the best. It covers each topic separately as well as providing practice NABs for each unit and a couple of whole course tests. It covers all the basics without any unecessary stuff although I felt it doesn't cover the harder questions. If you're aiming for an A then you should be using a variety of resources so to test yourself on the harder questions you're probably better usings past papers and asking your teacher for help if you need it.

No book is perfect and I felt that this one was the best revision book I had for any subject.

#102459 a simple (annoying) equasion

Posted by Amanda H on 10 September 2009 - 11:17 PM in Mathematics

Treat this question as you would if it was a normal fraction question with only numbers and no 'x'

Start by creating a common denominator so you can carry out the subtraction:

\frac{6(x+1)}{x(x+1)} - \frac{6x}{x(x+1)} = \frac{x(x+1)}{x(x+1)}

Expand the brackets


Collect terms on the left


Multiply through by the denominator

 6 = x(x+1)

Expand right hand side

 6 = x^2+x

Move everything to one side leaving 0 on the other



 (x-2)(x+3) = 0

If the only answer is x=2 then I'm assuming the answer is a measurement or something and not allowed to be negative.

#102438 Differentiation

Posted by Amanda H on 04 September 2009 - 04:46 PM in Mathematics

It would help if you could explain what it is that you find hard about it or don't understand then it would be easier to help you. Perhaps post a few questions here and say which part of it you are having trouble with.

#102429 Self teaching.

Posted by Amanda H on 31 August 2009 - 07:58 PM in New Fifth Years

Have you asked your school if they'll assist you doing an open learning course? My school didn't teach Higher Psychology but offered it open learning through a college. The college sent all the work to me via my school, one of the teachers at school was in charge of the group who took the course - not teaching us but passed on work and info from the college. There is no need to do it secretly just ask your school if it would be possible for them to set up a open learning course for you with a college.

Could I also ask what subjects your taking this year? You need to realise how difficult it is to teach yourself something when you don't have a class to go to at a set time and there is no teacher to tell you this or that needs to be done or someone just to ask 'is this answer right?'.

#102406 Reflections on Adv. Maths (Pure)

Posted by Amanda H on 23 August 2009 - 07:13 PM in Mathematics

QUOTE (Elizabeth Turner @ Aug 17 2009, 07:36 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
[b]I just began the Adv Higher course in June and I am finding the Product Rule, Quotient Rule etc. very challenging... I don't want to give up as i plan to do a maths degree at uni. Any tips would be very much appreciated as i need all the help i can get at the moment :S.

Lizzie xx[/b]

What is it specifically about the product and quotient rules that you are struggling with? Without knowing that the best advice I can give you is to do as many questions on both of these rules as you can until you feel you are confident using them. You do need to be comfortable using these rules as they form an important part of the course. With a bit of practice and making sure you get help when you need it you'll be differentiating in your sleep! biggrin.gif

I sat the advanced higher exam just over a year ago and I'm now doing maths at uni so if you've got any other questions I can answer them for you.