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Useful links

Your Guide to GCSE (9–1) Mathematics

GCSE (9-1) Maths Specification

Your Guide to IGCSE (9–1) Mathematics

IGCSE (9-1) Maths Specification

GCSE (9-1) Sample Maths Exam Papers

IGCSE (9-1) Sample Maths Exam Papers

Grading New GCSEs

Grading New IGCSEs


The New GCSE has the following details:

  • It is tiered with an overlapping tiers model
  • Foundation tier covers grades 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 (U)
  • Higher tier covers grades 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, (3), (U)
  • Overlap at grades 5 and 4


The New IGCSE has the following details:

  • Foundation tier (levels 1 – 5) and Higher tier (levels 4 – 9) with an allowable level 3
  • 2 × 2 hour papers
  • Each paper contributes 50% of the qualification
  • 2 similar papers with approximately 20 – 25 questions on each paper, with varying marks – those more challenging questions at the end of the paper generally have 6 marks maximum


A breakdown of each paper


For the Foundation tier 

  • 50% of the paper must be targeted at grades 1, 2, 3
  • 50% of the paper must be targeted at grades 3, 4, 5


For the Higher tier

  • 50% of the paper must be targeted at grades 4, 5, 6
  • 50% of the paper must be targeted at grades 7, 8, 9


20% of the marks must be in common questions appearing on both tiers.


The topics and the weightings of each content area which are set by Ofqual at each tier are as follows:


Number: Foundation 25%, Higher  15%

Algebra: Foundation 20%, Higher  30%

Ratio, proportion and rates of change:  Foundation 25%, Higher 20%

Geometry and measures: Foundation 15%, Higher 20%

Probability & Statistics: Foundation 15%, Higher 15%


Subject Content Introduced in the new GCSE:

  • know the exact values of sinθ and cosθ for θ = 0°, 30°, 45°, 60° and 90°; know the exact value of tanθ for θ = 0°, 30°, 45° and 60° (Foundation and Higher tier)

  • use inequality notation to specify simple error intervals due to truncation or rounding (Foundation and Higher tier)

  • Venn diagrams (Foundation and Higher tier)

  • work with percentages greater than 100% (Foundation and Higher tier)

  • recognise and use the equation of a circle with centre at the origin; find the equation of a tangent to a circle at a given point (GCSE Higher tier only)

  •  find approximate solutions to equations numerically using iteration (GCSE Higher tier only)

  • interpret the gradient at a point on a curve as the instantaneous rate of change; apply the concepts of average and instantaneous rate of change (gradients of chords and tangents) in numerical, algebraic and graphical contexts (Higher tier only)


  • Differentiation (IGCSE Higher Tier Only)


Previously Higher Tier Content now Included at Foundation Tier:

  • trigonometric ratios

  • calculate with and interpret standard form (A x 10n ), where 1 ≤ A < 10 and n is an integer

  • apply addition and subtraction of vectors, multiplication of vectors by a scalar, and diagrammatic and column representations of vectors

  • factorising quadratic expressions of the form x 2 + bx + c, including the difference of two squares

  • using y = mx + c to work with straight lines on graphs



To get more advise and help on preparing your child for Higher GCSE Maths exam contact us or visit our Tuition Centre.