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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 MATH00002
Credit points 20
Level of study QCA-3
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 1 (weeks 1 - 12)
Unit director Dr. Jayne Stansfield
Open unit status Not open

IELTS minimum 5.5 overall with a minimum of 5 in writing and 4.5 in all other components or equivalent

Students should have the appropriate qualifications in Mathematics at the equivalent of QCA level 2



School/department School of Mathematics
Faculty Faculty of Science


This unit provides a first course in calculus to a level equivalent to QCA level 3. It will prepare students on foundation and preliminary year programmes for entry or progression into higher level qualifications in the physical, life and biomedical sciences or quantitative social sciences. It is suitable for students who have not taken any mathematics qualifications beyond the equivalent of QCA level 2.

Intended learning outcomes

Subject-specific Intended Learning Outcomes

At the end of the unit students should 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 details

The unit will be taught through a combination of

  • synchronous online and, if subsequently possible, face-to-face lectures
  • asynchronous online materials, including narrated presentations and worked examples
  • guided asynchronous independent activities such as problem sheets and/or other exercises
  • synchronous weekly group problem/example classes, workshops and/or tutorials
  • synchronous weekly group tutorials
  • synchronous weekly office hours

Assessment Details

Assessment for learning/Formative Assessment Weekly problem sheets with feedback provided in tutorials

Assessment of learning/Summative Learning Students will assessed by one written exam at the end of the unit (100%).

Reading and References

Recommended Reading

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)

Further Reading

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)